Renowned actor Naseeruddin Shah has consistently voiced his opinions and taken political stances. He has often courted controversy with his candid remarks about Hindi films and their makers. In a recent interview with the Free Press Journal, the 72-year-old expressed concern about the creators of films like Gadar 2, The Kashmir Files, and The Kerala Story, considering their work to be potentially detrimental. While the world celebrated the release of Sunny Deol’s Gadar 2 after a 23-year wait, Naseeruddin Shah expressed disappointment at the immense popularity such films enjoy.
Success of Gadar 2
The Sunny Deol-Ameesha Patel starrer Gadar 2 performed exceptionally well at the box office, maintaining its momentum even after Shah Rukh Khan’s “Jawan” was released on September 7. Gadar 2’s total earnings amounted to Rs 514.60 crore. Naseeruddin Shah, a veteran actor with over five decades of experience, shared his thoughts on the success of Gadar 2 and other recent Bollywood productions. He criticized their storylines and opined that these films might not stand the test of time.
Shah emphasized the importance of filmmakers like Sudhir Mishra and Hansal Mehta continuing to create the kind of cinema they are known for, even if their films aren’t currently attracting large audiences. He urged them not to lose heart and to keep telling important stories.
Naseeruddin Shah’s Critique of Gadar 2, The Kashmir Files, and The Kerala Story
Naseeruddin Shah stated, “Nowadays, the more jingoistic you are, the more popular you become, because that’s what has dominated our country. Loving your country is not enough; you must loudly proclaim it and create imaginary enemies. What these individuals fail to realize is that their actions are very harmful. It’s disheartening to see films like Kerala Story and Gadar 2, which I haven’t watched but understand the premise, gain massive popularity, while movies by Sudhir Mishra, Anubhav Sinha, and Hansal Mehta, who strive to portray the truth of their times, go unnoticed. Nevertheless, it’s crucial for these filmmakers to persevere and continue telling their stories.”
Shah expressed his concern about the Gadar 2 creators praising the wrong aspects of the film, stating, “They will be held accountable for posterity. A century from now, people will watch ‘Bheed’ and they will also watch ‘Gadar 2’ to determine which one accurately portrays the truth of our era. Film is the only medium capable of accomplishing this task. Describing life as it is without resorting to abstraction is challenging. ‘Regressive’ is too mild a term for what is transpiring. It’s alarming that filmmakers are being influenced to produce movies that celebrate all the wrong things and unjustly vilify other communities. This is a dangerous trend.”