DUBAI An XPRESS report has prompted Indian filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar to clear the air about a contentious Dubai reference in his upcoming movie Heroine.
“I love Dubai. It’s one of the best cities in the world and my favourite city too. It gives me a Mumbai feel and I always look forward to visiting it with my family. My movies are loved here by not just expats but also Emiratis.
I have deep ties with Dubai and have many Arab friends. The city has given me great love and respect. I can’t even think of portraying it in a bad light
“I have deep ties with Dubai and have many Arab friends. The city has given me great love and respect. I can’t even think of portraying it in a bad light,” said Bhandarkar, 43, in an interview with XPRESS from Mumbai.
The award-winning director was reacting to the controversy sparked by a scene in the movie where protagonist Kareena Kapoor takes a dig at journalists saying: “You people should be writing scripts. If a heroine buys a car, it’s given to her by a businessman, if she goes to LA, she’s getting plastic surgery done and, God forbid, if she goes to Dubai, you people make her a rate card.”
Enraged residents said Bhandarkar had hurt their sentiments by suggesting that their city is a hub of flesh trade.
But the filmmaker denied the charge. “The dialogue should not be taken in isolation. When Kareena Kapoor says those lines in the movie, she’s not giving her viewpoint as the protagonist; instead she’s hitting out at news-hungry media for having such perceptions. It’s a poignant moment in the movie. Kareena, who plays fading actress Mahi Arora, is annoyed by journalists cooking up stories about her and she unleashes her fury against them.
“If the dialogue was offensive, it wouldn’t have been cleared by the censor board in Dubai. They have no problem with it. That said, I will sit with my unit and see what we can do about it,” added Bhandarkar, who’s coming to Dubai with Kareena on September 3 to promote the movie ahead of its September 13 release in the UAE.