No kiss please, Mr Bond: we’re Indians
Following the Censor Board of Film Certification’s decision of reducing the duration of a liplock scene in the recently released Bond film, Spectre, starring actor Daniel Craig, the Indian film industry has strongly reacted against the move.
“Kissing scenes with both Monica Bellucci and Léa Seydoux have been reduced to a mere peck on the lips,” says a source who has seen the edited version of the film. The decision has drawn strong reactions from the country, yet Pahlaj Nihalani, chairman of the censor board, defends his decision. “For this film, the filmmakers applied for a U/A certificate. That certificate dictates that the film has to fit the sensibilities of a family, so the scenes had to be edited out. People also forget that this film will be later televised too. And you can’t have those kissing scenes on TV, as it will affect the children,” he says.
On the other hand, experts from the industry feel that such decisions have made the censor board a laughing stock. “I was laughing when I heard the news. Nihalani’s sycophancy has crossed all limits. He can do whatever he wants and no one can do anything against that,” says director Hansal Mehta. Filmmaker Ashoke Pandit, who is also a member of the censor board says, “He (Nihalani) thinks he is more of an Indian than the rest of us. It’s ridiculous that the scenes were edited because they were too long.” Trade analyst Komal Nahta believes that such decisions are poor for business. “For films such as these, the audience likes to go for cheap thrills. And when you remove such scenes, people tend to not go to theatres and that can be bad for the film’s business,” he says.
Censor Board shortens the liplock in the latest James Bond film Spectre; the decision gets trolled on Twitter!