Karan Johar on Ae Dil Hai Mushkil controversy: 'I was torn between ideology and circumstances'
In an exclusive interview with CNN News 18, Karan Johar admits that it felt like an Al Qaeda hostage video when he was forced to prove his nationalism ahead of his film Ae Dil Hai Mushkil's release last year.
Filmmaker Karan Johar has poured his heart out on three issues that he feels strongly about — the recent attack in Jaipur on Sanjay Leela Bhansali on the sets of his upcoming period biopic Padmavati, Johar's public spat with the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) over the release of his romantic drama Ae Dil Hai Mushkil last year and the rumours of his sexual relations with long-time collaborator, Shah Rukh Khan.
In an exclusive interview to CNN News 18, Johar dubbed the attack on Bhansali by the Shri Rajput Karni Sena 'ridiculous'.
"It is a symptom of just the fact that you can get away with it. You may have knowledge of what the film is about but have you read the script? What do you know about the script? Secondly, every filmmaker has a right to interpretation. Of course you must respect history and project it aesthetically but how dare someone come to that set and assault him"
— News18 (@CNNnews18) February 10, 2017
Johar also addressed the controversy from last year in which he found himself in a similar position. After the Uri attack in September, MNS threatened to vandalise the cinema halls in which Ae Dil Hai Mushkil is screened as it starred a Pakistani actor in Fawad Khan. Johar was forced to post a video of himself apologizing for possibly hurting the national sentiment.
"It was traumatic. It would be in the worst three moments of my life, having to sit in front of a camera and prove my nationalism to everyone. Many people called it an Al Qaeda hostage video and they are not wrong in saying so. It was like I had an invisible gun on my head.I was in near tears but didn't plead. I was torn between ideology and circumstances. I was accountable to the studio, crew and cast. I feel terrible about posting that video," he said.
Johar also expressed his gratitude to the state government for resolving the issue.
Johar also addressed the rumours of him having sexual relations with Khan for a long time. "Shah Rukh is like a brother. How can I sleep with my brother! These rumours of him and me are ridiculous."
Watch the entire interview on Virtuosity at 10pm on Saturday, 11 February.
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