Meghna Gulzar agrees Deepika's JNU visit did impact their film Chhapaak | Bollywood - Hindustan Times

Meghna Gulzar agrees Deepika Padukone's JNU visit did impact Chhapaak: ‘The conversation went somewhere else’

Nov 28, 2023 10:50 AM IST

Meghna Gulzar spoke about the Deepika Padukone's controversial JNU visit in 2020 and how it had impacted their film Chhapaak's performance.

Deepika Padukone's JNU visit in January 2020 became massively controversial. Slogans were raised on streets and on social media about ‘boycotting’ the actor and her film Chhapaak, which was to be released then. Now, film's director Meghna Gulzar has spoken about it. (Also read: Twinkle Khanna defends Deepika Padukone after she was trolled: She didn't fall at the feet of her first suitor)

Deepika Padukone visited JNU during the students' protests, showing her solidarity with them.
Deepika Padukone visited JNU during the students' protests, showing her solidarity with them.

Meghna Gulzar on Deepika's JNU visit

Meghna said that the entire episode did derail the conversation on acid attack survivors that the film was about. Speaking at the Indian Express Adda event, she said, "I am sure that the answer is pretty obvious. Yes, of course, it made a dent on the film. Because the conversation went from acid violence, which I intended the film to amplify, to somewhere else. So, of course it impacted the film. There is no denying that.”

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What happened in JNU?

JNU was on the boil in early 2020 when groups of masked miscreants intruded into the campus and assaulted students in the Sabarmati hostel with sticks and metal rods. The controversy took bigger shape with JNU students getting accused of raising ‘antinational slogans’ on campus.

Before heading to JNU, Deepika Padukone had spoken about the violence against students at the JNU campus in an interview to NDTV. “I feel proud to see that we aren’t scared to express ourselves... I think the fact that we are thinking about the country and its future.... Whatever may be our point of view, it’s nice to see,” she had said.

Chhapaak was based on the story of an acid attack survivor, played by Deepika in the film. It was co-produced by Deepika herself and also starred Vikrant Massey. The film got mostly positive reviews but failed to perform well at the box office.

This year, Deepika has featured in two back-to-back hits--Pathaan and Jawan. Both earned more than 1000 crore at the worldwide box office and starred Shah Rukh Khan in the lead. Her next release will be Fighter with Hrithik Roshan.

Meghna Gulzar's next, Sam Bahadur release this Friday, December 1. It stars Vicky Kaushal as field marshall Sam Maneckshaw.

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