Shah Rukh Khan recently attended Magnetic Maharashtra Convergence 2018, a global investor's summit. The actor was part of a panel discussion titled Media - Shaping the future & entertainment at the event where he was asked about the highly controversial period drama, Padmaavat.
The Ranveer Singh, Deepika Padukone and Shahid Kapoor starrer, Padmaavat which hit the screens on January 25 this year faced a tremendous amount of trouble from the CBFC and the fringe groups.
The actor addressed the threat that always revolves around any form of expression in the creative sphere. He said, "Creativity, whenever it’ll come to fore, all around the world, there are going to be people who disagree to certain parts. You will find some people who will find some reason to dislike it – be it a film, news piece, web series. It’s going to keep happening. It has happened to all of us at certain times in our career. Where certain sections of people have said they don’t like it. But the films finally do get released. If they are nice films, people lap it up."
Addressing the Padmavaat issue, Shah Rukh said, "Our business of films happen in the first few days. If you kill the first few days, the business suffers. Recently with the Viacom film (Padmaavat) we had people saying ‘why don’t the other stars come up, they are not coming up, oh they are hiding.’ No, we are not hiding. As a matter of fact, the simple truth is this – there is a section of people who go on an ‘uprising’ so to say. If more prominent actors, actresses and directors came and talked about this film—as a matter of fact, many times I suggested to their team, not to talk about this, just keep quiet because you are giving wind to fire. And suddenly these people are getting more recognised by the virtue of being on all the news channels. So don’t give them importance."
"Sometimes, when people are going in an ‘uprising’, you should just stand back. Nobody is scared, fearful or hiding their own skin as is said about Bollywood stars, ‘oh these people just want to earn money and not do anything for the society.’ No. We love our society. We make entertaining films and we want our society to be happy," he added.
And while there have been protests, it hasn't stopped many creative thinkers or filmmakers from doing what they love. Speaking on the same, Shah Rukh said, "So that’s my responsibility, as an entertainer—who has been working for more than half of his lifetime—it’s an important aspect. It’s not something that I’ve gotten scared of. No matter however much you stop them, creative people will continue making films, they will speak what they want. Sometimes there could be troubles, but they won’t be scared of the hardship. No filmmakers goes out and makes films to insult people, to trouble regions, to disturb the community. I never think anyone does that. Especially all the responsible people. Sometimes this is going to happen."
"The sooner the world realises that with this free flowing of information, technology and communication that is happening, a time is going to come when nobody can stop any idea from flowing freely. None of us can stop it. The faster we get used to this, that no matter how much we stop it, break it, hide it, the ideas won’t stop. All the more with social media and digital. This is the beauty of the current world for entertainment and media," he added.
At the end of the day, the actor said how even as an entertainer, they do worry about the audience's safety. He said, "A part of that happiness is as a 52-year-old father, I want you to come to the theater safe and sound with your child and happily go, even if you don’t like the film. The experience should be fantastic. That’s my responsibility. So the hurtfulness is not because ‘I am worried about my film’ but I am worried about that girl, my own son watching the film."
Despite being banned in several states, Padmaavat has garnered over Rs 540 crore worldwide and keeps steadily rising.