Aamir Khan may be the darling of everyone’s eye after one of his movies has entered the Academy Awards again (it is India’s official entry to the Oscars), but there’s a twist in the tale this time. Filmmakers Anusha Rizvi and her husband Mahmood Farooqui have distanced themselves from Peepli Live citing differences with Aamir Khan, who is also the producer of the film.

Anusha Rizvi, Aamir Khan, Mahmood Farooqui

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The couple claimed that Aamir Khan was trying to steal all the credit and fame. Co-director and casting director Mahmood Farooqui said, “Those who wanted the money, fame and credits wanted it more than us, so we left it to them and returned to Delhi,” and added that the husband-wife team had “removed ourselves” from it. Director Rizvi said she was unhappy with the presentation of the titles and acknowledgements.

Rumours about dissent within the team had leaked out after the making of ‘Peepli Live’ with issues about Aamir’s creative interference and the final edit, where Aamir had supposedly dominated. Though the team tried to put on a brave face during the India release, things looked troubled when Rizvi was ignored at the UK release of ‘Peepli Live’.

Aamir Khan’s meddling ways, or “creative inputs”, are not making headlines for the first time. Taare Zameen Par was initially director Amol Gupte’s project. Later, Aamir took over the reins from Amol since he was dissatisfied with Amol’s direction and went on to complete the movie on his own. ‘Taare Zameen Par’ ended up with Amol Gupte getting credit as creative director.

Ironically, fame, media, the limelight and the problems in its wake are the issues that ‘Peepli Live’ deals with.

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