Toprani feels CBFC is biased against new producers

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Mumbai, Oct 6 (IANS) Veteran theatre director Janak Toprani feels the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) is biased against new producers and says one needs backing from a “big production house or have big stars” to get the film passed easily.

He is distressed about the functioning of the board as his film “Call For Fun” got ‘A’ certificate with cuts when they had sought a ‘U’ certificate.

“Our film is naughty and has edgy humour but we didn’t deserve an A certificate and that too with cuts. Forget the film, even our trailer had to be trimmed. CBFC members thought ’36-24-36′ was vulgar! I can think of several films that had the similar dialogue and were given UA certificate,” Toprani said in a statement.

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Produced by Filmquest, “Call For Fun” is scripted, directed and co-produced by Toprani. It launched nine newcomers.

The film’s cast includes Zaan Khan, Shubhangi Mehrotra, Charu Asopa, Prashant Kanaujia, Aashish Gade, Priyanka Arya, Swagata Naik Prasad Shikhare and Linesh Fanse. It released on Friday.

“The Chairman (Prasoon Joshi) may have changed but the system remains unchanged. I sense the censor board is prejudiced against new producers, who produce a film without the backing of an established production house or established starcast,” Toprani added.

Talking about “Call For Fun”, he said: “Our film imbibes coming-of-age edgy comedy but it can’t be classified vulgar or erotica! It’s a fun film – yet there is no skin show, not even a single cuss word, but still we got an A because the board members thought the theme was not fit for teenagers.”

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Toprani went on to compare it with other films.

“Recently, CBFC has certified films like ‘Vicky Donor’, ‘Shubh Mangal Saavdhan’ and ‘Poster Boys’ dealing with adult subjects like a film about sperm donation, erectile dysfunction and vasectomy, with U/A certification despite dealing with adult themes which goes to prove that CBFC is discriminating against new producers.

“I can give examples of dialogues from these films that fall surely in adult category – but when pointed out, a member explained that such dialogue was a part of mother-daughter conversation, so it was allowed.

“I feel your film has to be backed by a big production house or have big stars to get passed easily. The committee members are subconsciously influenced by big names.”

Toprani thinks “the system needs a total overhaul as it is against the principle of natural justice”.

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