Kiran Rao Ask Filmmakers – Especially Those Whose Films Make Hundreds Of Crores, To Make Positive Content: “When Really Regressive Messaging Makes Hundreds Of Crores, It Hurts”
Kiran Rao Says It Hurts When Films With ‘Regressive Messages’ Make Hundreds Of Crores: “It Would Be Really Nice If The Big Films…” (Photo Credit: YouTube)

Kiran Rao doesn’t shy away from speaking her mind on topics about the film industry. The filmmaker – who took her film Laapataa Ladies to TIFF 2023, recently spoke about films with ‘regressive’ messaging, minting moolah at the box office. Her statement comes just days after actor Naseeruddin Shah said it was disturbing that films The Kashmir Files, The Kerala Story and Gadar 2 were earning crores at the box office and leaving a mark.

For the unversed, a part of his statement read, “… regressive is a pretty mild word for what’s going on, it’s frightening where filmmakers are being coopted into making films which praise all the wrong things and run down other communities for no reason at all,” as he spoke about The Kerala Story, Gadar 2, and The Kashmir Filmes being massively popular and earning hundreds of crores at the box office.

Coming to the topic at hand, during a recent interaction with Film Companion (via Hindustan Times), Kiran Rao – without naming any film or filmmaker, said, “I suppose all filmmakers set out to make good films, the intention is often great. But so much has changed in terms of the market. The audience now has so many more options and you are reaching for all kinds of attention, when you’re making a film.”

Kiran Rao added, “So I suppose when it is a really regressive sort of messaging, and it makes hundreds of crores, it hurts. Because you had the opportunity and you could have pushed the needle in some direction and you didn’t. So those are the things that sometimes bother me.” To it, she added, “Having said that, every filmmaker has their goals, and they are going to do what they do.”

She noted, “But it would be really nice if the big films, the kind that audiences love and earn lots at the box office, were also doing some of that important work for us. Building our society in a more positive way, not stereotyping people, in fact breaking some of those regressive ideas down or in some way opening up those conversations. I am not saying that all big films are not good but it would be great if we had more success of films that have better messaging. Having said that, films are not necessarily for social change.”

Talking about the films’ box office collections, Sunny Deol’s Gadar 2 has collected over 516 crores at the domestic box office since its release 34 days ago. Adah Sharma-led The Kerala Story’s lifetime collection stands at 242.20 crores, whereas Vivek Agnihotri’s The Kashmir Files is around 326.95 crores (gross).

Do you agree with Kiran Rao’s statement on this issue? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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