With the PM picking up the issue at a BJP Parliamentary Party meet, where he spoke about the role of the film industry in presenting history, mentioning The Kashmir Files, the film is in the national news many times in a day apart from trending on Twitter. (By Arrangement)
The Kashmir Files directed by Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri has the audience thronging to see the film despite a plethora of controversies associated with it. Many went the whole hog to discredit the content, the style of filmmaking and the narrative. Yet, the film has grown every day.
Agnihotri even said there were attempts to sabotage his film, pointing a finger at film critic and Vinod Chopra’s wife Anupama Chopra.
"I am overwhelmed by the response of people who have liked the film as they realized it is a history that they were never aware of," says Agnihotri who even went ahead to push the envelope to Prime Minister Narendra Modi apart from Amit Shah and the others.
With the PM picking up the issue at a BJP Parliamentary Party meet, where he spoke about the role of the film industry in presenting history, mentioning The Kashmir Files, the film is in the national news many times in a day apart from trending on Twitter.
THE MANY ROADBLOCKS
Kapil Sharma’s snub
Kapil Sharma’s show that often has stars promoting their film, allegedly, refused to invite The Kashmir Files team. "They refused to call us on their show because we don’t have a big commercial star," Vivek Agnihotri had said. Kapil Sharma was badly trolled.
But later, Anupam Kher clarified, and said that "he did not want to promote a serious film on a funny show when he was called for the show."
Quickly, Kapil posted a part of the video with Anupam, clarifing the same. But he didn’t post the entire conversation that transpired. So obviously there was more to it.
Anupam took a dig at Sharma, tweeted, "Dear @KapilSharmaK9! I wish you had posted the full video and not the half truth. The entire world is celebrating, you also celebrate tonight. Love and prayers always!"
The Jammu Files
A Jammu court asked the filmmaker not to show martyred Squadron Leader Ravi Khanna in the movie after his widow Nirmal Khanna said the film does not present facts but belittles the sanctity of her late husband. Khanna was among the four IAF personnel shot dead in Srinagar by men from Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chief Yasin Malik.
"I want to respect the sentiments. That lady is old, her husband is a martyr and she perhaps wanted the film to be made around him. But this is the first time that we are even talking about him and his sacrifice," says Agnihotri.
Meanwhile a screening of the film was halted in Jammu where videos of people being assaulted also came up on social media. Agnihotri calls the entire process, "undemocratic".
"People who wanted to sabotage the film came in jeans and t-shirts and tried to create a problem so that the families that are watching the film should run away in panic. This is being done to sabotage the film," Agnihotri said.
Another show of the film in Shillong, Meghalaya, was also cancelled, even though the show was houseful. The manager allegedly informed them that the print of the film had not been received for showcasing.
The Rating Mess
The final nail in the coffin was when IMDB put up a note stating that there was an attempt to tamper with the ratings and they decided to use an alternate method
"The @IMDb page of #TheKashmirFiles says: "Our rating mechanism has detected unusual voting activity on this title. To preserve the reliability of our rating system, an alternate weighting calculation has been applied."
"This is very unusual and unethical," said Agnihotri leading to several people calling it "a conspiracy against the film by the Bollywood Mafia".
Vivek says, "IMDB actually realized that a lot of people were trying to sabotage the film by giving it one star and that is the reason why they stopped the regular usage. They are following rules to stop the sabotage," he clarifies.
Box office phenomenon
The film which released on March 11 has earned a little less than Rs 80 crores in six days and what was interesting to see is that it aced the Monday test when films fell to less than 40 percent of the Sunday collections. On Sunday the film netted Rs 17.25 cr. and Monday it bagged Rs 16.25 cr. Tuesday also saw a higher collection of Rs 18 cr which beat the numbers garnered by 2021’s biggest Bollywood hit Sooryavanshi. The Wednesday collections came up to a little then than Rs 20 crore which is the highest in recent times for any Bollywood movie and is the only film to show a rise in box office daily.