“You put anything in the hands of any little bureaucrat sitting anywhere who can remember any movie,” laments filmmaker Sudhir Mishra, as he condemns the latest amendments proposed by the government to the 1952 Film Act.
Last month, the Center released the Cinematograph (Amendment) Bill 2021 seeking public comment, including a provision that allows the power to review films that have been cleared by the Central Board of Film Certification ( CBFC). This angered several filmmakers, including Mishra, Anurag Kashyap, Hansal Mehta, Nandita Das, Shabana Azmi, Farhan Akhtar, Zoya Akhtar and Dibakar Banerjee, among others.
âIt’s weird. I don’t understand why you want more law,â Mishra says and asks, âSo what’s the value of CBFC? When anyone can remember any movie, then how do you do it. any movie, why am I making a movie and spending the money on its release when you can remember it.
The filmmaker adds that this will only increase the risk factor of the already risky activity of the cinema. âAnd I have to make docile films,â he says angrily, adding that âthe new proposal undermines the power of CBFCâ.
Now, Mishra is wondering what happened to the recommendations made by another panel of experts with filmmaker Shyam Benegal as chair in 2016, which reviewed the film certification process and suggested limited jurisdiction for the council of certification.
âItne saare log the usmein. Woh gay kahan report? Things are already so difficult at the moment with the pandemic, and on top of that, they say that everyone can now remember the film, âlaments the 54-year-old.
Pointing out how people in India are “easily offended” by the little things displayed on the screen, Mishra continues, “It will become a joke. To steal a movie, I can take offense and remember it. It will be endless. . It will be an absurd comedy that will be tragic for the filmmakers. They should not allow it. We are also writing to the government to suggest that they not release it. “