"Being from filmmaking background, I came here to support this film to watch it first day first show. Two days ago there was a pirated print floating around. I don't support piracy first of all. I am going to watch this movie and also going to ask all my friends to watch it in theatres only," said a Mumbaikar at PVR Juhu theatre.
Udta Punjabhas released with a single court-ordered cut, after the producers appealed against some 89-odd edits demanded by the Censor Board, including the deleting of all references to Punjab.
"It is very disappointing when Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) which is only supposed to certify the films is actually censoring it and cutting it. As a filmmaker we put all our efforts and we want to show what we have visualized but there are certain people who are not letting us put the film as it is shot. Editing the film itself changes the story of the film, so you lose the plot and that is not how the film was supposed to be made," said the audience member at the Mumbai theatre.
"I still believe there are many more challenges because recently another film Haramkhor directed by Anurag's (Kashyap) assistant is stalled with the Censor Board. So the issue is going to be there but still with this film, since the battle was fought in the court, I still believe that there is a hope," he added.
Udta Punjab, directed by Abhishek Chaubey, deals with Punjab's drug problem. It stars Shahid Kapoor as an addicted rocker, Alia Bhatt as a Bihari migrant, Kareena Kapoor as a doctor and Diljit Dosanjh as a cop. The film has been co-produced by Ekta Kapoor's Balaji Productions and Phantom Films, whose co-owner Anurag Kashyap spearheaded the battle to release the film in its entirety. After the leaked version of the film made headlines, Mr Kashayp made an impassioned appeal on Facebook:
Shahid, Alia and celebs like Aamir Khan and Priyanka Chopra also urged people to watch the film in theatres.
"I am not sure whether it was a CBFC copy. But if it's a censor copy then it's a shame on CBFC, it reflects very badly on them. Piracy is an issue, which we all have been fighting for a very long time. I am quite excited about the film and eagerly waiting for it. It's a good decision by the Bombay High Court. I will be watching it here because I am shooting now," Aamir Khan told reporters in a press conference in Ludhiana.
Much love and luck to the #UdtaPunjab team.. And Movies should be watched in the theatres & don't let Piracy win? PRIYANKA (@priyankachopra) June 16, 2016
Blood and sweat of many in this film. It's been your battle as much as ours. Now is the time you can show it. Watch UdtaPunjab in theatres? Shahid Kapoor (@shahidkapoor) June 15, 2016
It's a genuine request from the bottom of my heart. That's all I can say. Until then see you at the theatres #piracydimaadi? Alia Bhatt (@aliaa08) June 15, 2016
Shocking how #UdtaPunjab has been leaked online. That too a censor copy. A lot of hard work goes into making a film pls say NO to piracy!? Sonakshi Sinha (@sonakshisinha) June 16, 2016
Movie theatres r filled with dreams and entertainment,don't kill them ! say no to piracy #UdtaPunjab at a theatre near u? Sidharth Malhotra (@S1dharthM) June 16, 2016
Films are made with the hard work & passion of everyone involved in creating them. Please don't support piracy.? Shraddha Kapoor (@ShraddhaKapoor) June 16, 2016