Director Om Raut, who has had to deal with controversies fuelled by Saif Ali Khan on two films now, has said that the actor’s words are often misunderstood. Saif recently had to retract his comments about the treatment of Raavan in Om’s upcoming mythological epic, Adipurush.
In an interview, the filmmaker said that he would have preferred to not have drawn negative attention towards the film before fans are able to experience it, and that he would like for Adipurush to speak for itself.
Asked if Saif has an ‘honesty problem’ or a ‘foot-in-mouth problem’, Om told journalist Rajeev Masand in an interview, “I think Saif sir has his own way of thinking. What he kind of meant and what comes out is maybe not always communicated well. That’s one thing that we’ve come over… We’re over it. I love Saif sir for the commitment he has for the subject, the type of reading that he has done. That’s the Saif Ali Khan that we should know, and that’s the Saif Ali Khan that’s a page of Indian cinema.”
Saif landed in trouble for saying that Adipurush would delve into the villainous demon king’s motivations in a nuanced manner. Saif had told Mumbai Mirror, “It’s interesting to play a demon king, less strictures in that. But we will make him humane, up the entertainment quotient, justify his abduction of Sita and the war with Ram as revenge for what was done to his sister Surpanakha by Lakshman, who cut off her nose.”
When his comments attracted the attention of certain section of the public, Saif issued an apology and said that he did not intend on offending anyone, and that the film will present the story ‘without any distortions’.
Om said that he wouldn’t want to add to Saif’s last statement, and that he would want to leave it at that. “As a writer-director, you want your piece of art to do the speaking.”
Saif had landed in a similar fix when he declared his first film with Om, Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior, to be historically inaccurate. “For some reason I didn’t take a stand… maybe next time I would,” Saif had told Film Companion, adding, “I was very excited to play the role because it’s a delicious role. But when people say this is history; I don’t think this is history. I am quite aware of what the history was.”
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