By: Mohnish Singh
Filmmaker Chandraprakash Dwivedi on Monday said the team of his upcoming historical film Prithviraj has been respectful in depicting the life of the legendary warrior king Samrat Prithviraj Chauhan on the big screen.
Earlier this year, the Delhi High Court had refused to entertain a plea seeking to modify the name of the feature film which stars Akshay Kumar in the title role.
The counsel of the petitioner Rashtriya Pravasi Parishad had submitted that Samrat Prithviraj was a great emperor and putting the movie title only as Prithviraj hurts the sentiments of the public at large and it should be more respectful.
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During the trailer launch of the film, Dwivedi said producer Aditya Chopra had asked him if there was any possibility of changing the title but the team stuck to the original name as it was historically correct.
“I told him that the first-ever written text that we consider to be ‘Prithviraj Raso’, even there he isn’t mentioned as ‘Samrat Prithviraj’. Even in ‘Prithviraj Vijaya’ (there was no mention of ‘Samrat’)… I believe people should not be offended if we call anyone by their name… He’s such a great personality, if you call him with love, people should accept it. To those who still have a doubt, when they watch the film, they’ll be satisfied,” the director told reporters in Mumbai.
Dwivedi, who has previously directed the 1991 TV epic show Chanakya and the 2003 Partition film Pinjar, said people have the right to be offended but their protests should be non-violent.
Through the film, the filmmaker said the team is paying “tributes” to the historical ruler and promised audiences that he wouldn’t show anything that is unacceptable to them. “Every group, every citizen of the country has the freedom to exercise their constitutional rights… If I do something wrong, you have the right to question me, but not by using violence. We are paying tributes to Prithviraj. He’s a national figure, who was accepted from Kashmir to Kanyakumari as our supreme warrior. Being a warrior was just one aspect of his, others you’ll see in the film. On this historical personality, why would any filmmaker or actor do anything which is opposed by the society?” he added.
The film also stars Sanjay Dutt, Sonu Sood, and marks the screen debut of Miss World 2017 Manushi Chhillar, who plays the role of Sanyogita.
A Yash Raj Films production, Prithviraj is scheduled to be released on June 3, 2022.