CBFC believes showing smoking or drinking means a film can’t qualify for U: Chef director Raja Menon
A day after reports emerged that Chef has been handed a UA certificate because the lead character is a divorcee and smokes onscreen, director Raja Krishna Menon has said people at the Central Board of Film Certification believe if a film shows smoking or drinking, it automatically can’t qualify for a U certificate.
Raja told Hindustan Times, “They (CBFC members) felt the subject wasn’t one that could be digested by kids below 12 unsupervised and apparently smoking or drinking if shown in a film automatically means it can’t qualify for a U,” hence the Saif Ali Khan-starrer film got a UA instead of U certificate.
Normally, if a filmmaker or producer is not happy with the certification provided to his film, he can approach the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT). However, Raja said he doesn’t plan to challenge the certification. “No we don’t plan to do so because it (certification) doesn’t affect our exhibition strategy,” he said.
While much hope was pinned on the change of regime when Prasoon Joshi replaced Pahlaj Nihalani, the CBFC continues to send shockers like this one across the industry. Asked if it means the change of CBFC head hasn’t brought much of a change for the process, Raja said he would prefer to wait before passing the judgement. “This isn’t a film that tests if the cbfc has changed or not. We’d have to wait for something that is more on the edge to see if they are looking at films differently,” he said.
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