Refuting rumours that the copies of Udta Punjab and Great Grand Masti leaked online were censor copies, the Central Board Of Film Certification (CBFC) has decided to ban submission of DVD format of movies for censor certification.
According to a DNA report, CBFC chief Pahlaj Nihalani has now passed an order for submission of movies on the DCP (digital cinema projection) format.
“We had many complaints about DVD prints marked ‘Censor Copy’ being leaked online. Firstly, the censor copy was made by the producers, not us. So, the leak could be sourced to any place from the point where the producers make copies. But we have stopped that procedure. We now watch films on the digital format. So there is no censor copy made for us,” the report quoted Nihalani as saying.
Nihalani further informed that “the Film Certificate Appellate Tribunal, known as the Tribunal, still requires a DVD copy.”
The report also quoted CBFC CEO Anurag Shrivastava as saying, “As for Great Grand Masti, the film came only once to us and that was on January 19. It was shown to us and was refused the certificate (they had ordered several cuts). The film didn’t come to us for revising, the makers went straight to the Tribunal. On March 23 or 24 the Tribunal passed an order (they upturned the cuts ordered by CBFC) and we issued the certificate subsequently on April 1. At the same time we sealed the final version of the DVD, got it signed by the applicant and saved it under lock and key in the record room. There has been no tampering or anything of that sort. I don’t see any way this could have leaked from our side.”
“In the case of Udta Punjab, we had explained that the film had come in the form of hard disc in the movie format, shown to us and taken back. At no point was it ever handled by us. The first time it came in our possession was when the certificate was issued and that was at 6 p m on the day when it had already been leaked online,” he added in regard to the speculations that the ‘Udta Punjab’ leak had happened from the CBFC’s end.”
When Shrivastava was further quizzed that the leaked version has the word censor copy written on it, he dismisses it saying, “The word censor copy is written by the producer only. It is from their side, we don’t do anything like that from our side. In fact, it is not even necessary to be written, but because it’s been a convention they have always been mentioning it.”
“Why would we be interested in doing this to two films?” he added, saying they get 2000 films for certification from Mumbai alone.
For the unversed, less than a month ago, Udta Punjab was leaked online two days before its release. Recently, Great Grand Masti was leaked online two weeks prior to its release.
Coincidentally, both the films have been co-produced by Balaji Motion Pictures and both had CBFC cuts. As a consequence of the leak, the release of Great Grand Masti had to be advanced from July 22 to July 15.
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