Prakash Jha says he’ll react to boycott trends when good films suffer: Difficult to judge impact on weak films

Directed Prakash Jha in a recent interview talked about people getting offended by him for years amid the current cancel culture in Bollywood. He shared his comments after his MX Player series Aashram was met with criticism of hurting Hindu sentiments. After the failure of Laal Singh Chaddha, the director cited examples of Aamir Khan’s hit films–Lagaan and Dangal, to talk about whether boycott trends can really impact a movie. Also read: Prakash Jha says people are making ‘bakwas’ movies

Starring Bobby Deol in the lead, Aashram revolves around the rise of a Godman under suspicion for misleading his followers and building a cult. Some people took to Twitter and demanded a total ban on the show with the hashtag #BanAashramWebseries. Reacting to it, Prakash believes everyone has a right to express themselves.

In a conversation with ETimes, Prakash Jha responded to claims of hurting Hindu sentiment. He said, “People have been getting offended with me for years. I have now started saying along with all the fundamental rights which our constitution provides us, right to expression, we should add right to be offended. It should become a fundamental right in India, cause we get offended with everything. If a girl wears jeans we get offended. Somebody puts a tikka or reads a shloka we get offended. Aap ke pass right hai (you have a right) to be offended so don’t be afraid.”

Talking about the current situation in Bollywood where films are not working at the box office after boycott calls, he added that there will always be people against projects. “But that has always been there. Now it has become visible, because they can come on social media and talk about it. I will be able to comment on something like this when I have a great film, whether it is Lagaan or Dangal, and that gets boycotted, and people don’t come to see it. Then I will say yes, boycott has an impact.” According to him, it is difficult to examine the impact of boycott trends on a weak film.

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