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Last Updated 23.07.2024 | 6:07 PM IST



Oppenheimer faces backlash over depiction of Bhagavad Gita in an intimate scene

en Bollywood News Oppenheimer faces backlash over depiction of Bhagavad Gita in an intimate scene

Oppenheimer was passed with U/A by CBFC and released on July 21.

The much-anticipated film about Robert Oppenheimer titled Oppenheimer, the brilliant mind behind the creation of the world's first atomic bomb, hit the theatres on Friday, receiving an overwhelming response at the box office. However, amidst the success of the Christopher Nolan epic, a particular scene has stirred controversy among some Indian movie-goers.

Oppenheimer faces backlash over depiction of Bhagavad Gita in an intimate scene

Oppenheimer faces backlash over depiction of Bhagavad Gita in an intimate scene

The scene in question features Robert Oppenheimer, portrayed by talented actor Cillian Murphy, reading the Bhagavad Gita during a sexual encounter. This depiction has drawn criticism and disapproval from certain quarters, with individuals expressing their concerns over the portrayal of a revered religious text in such a context.

Uday Mahurkar, an Information Commissioner with the government of India, voiced his perplexity over the approval of the movie by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) with this specific scene intact. “One is perplexed as to how the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) could approve the movie with this scene,” said Uday Mahurkar.

The Save Culture Save India Foundation, in a press release, echoed his sentiment, calling for an urgent investigation by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (I&B) into the matter. They further demanded strict punishment for those involved in the creation and inclusion of the contentious scene. “A scene in the movie shows a woman make a man read Bhagavad Gita aloud while getting over him and doing sexual intercourse... This should be investigated by I & B Ministry on an urgent basis and those involved should be severely punished,” the press statement by Save Culture Save India Foundation read.

The film holds the distinction of being Christopher Nolan's first movie to receive an R-rating, indicating that it contains content that may not be suitable for children under 17 without parental guidance. However, India's censor board opted for a U/A rating after certain cuts were made to the scene by the studio itself in an attempt to reduce its length. The decision to edit the sequence reportedly stemmed from concerns that the original portrayal might not have received approval from the CBFC.

Bollywood Hungama was the first to report the reason for R-rating. We had informed that it was because it has explicit sex scenes, again a first for the master director. A source had told us, “The studio knew that the CBFC would never allow the scene even if they requested for an ‘A’ rating. As a result, they themselves cut some shots off or reduced the length. They have tried their best to cut it smartly so that it doesn’t hinder the experience of the viewers. The end result is that the sex and nude scenes are there but in a not-so-objectionable manner.”

The source continued, “The CBFC only asked to mute the word ‘a*****e’ and to also remove it from the subtitles. Once it was done, the film was awarded a U/A certificate.”

The source also revealed, “Interestingly, the shot where Jean Tatlock (Florence Pugh) makes Oppenheimer (Cillian Murphy) read from the Bhagavad Gita while having sex has been retained. Usually, such shots are the first to be axed in today’s times as it can hurt sentiments. Surprisingly, the CBFC didn’t ask for it to be axed.”

The censor certificate for Oppenheimer was awarded on July 19, just a few hours before the press screening, which was held in Mumbai. The length of the film, as mentioned on the certificate, is 180 minutes, that is, 3 hours.

Also Read: “Oppenheimer misquoted Bhagavad Gita,” explains mythologist Devdutt Pattanaik;  decodes “I have become death” quote

More Pages: Oppenheimer (English) Box Office Collection , Oppenheimer (English) Movie Review


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