Expressing regret and unease about the Ae Dil Hai Mushkil controversy from last year, Bollywood director Karan Johar has said that he felt ‘terrible’ about putting out a video statement wherein he said that he will not engage with Pakistani talent.
“I feel terrible because I had to be at a place in my life where I have to sit in front of the camera and actually go and speak about my nationalism and my feeling of patriotism towards my country. And I feel that I have worked and contributed to this country in my own tiny way for the last 20 years of my life,” said Karan to Vir Sanghvi during an interview on TV channel CNN-News18.
The Koffee With Karan host also revealed that it felt like a hostage video with an ‘invisible gun’ on his head. “It was one of the top 3 worst moments of my life. Everyone said it looked like you were going to cry. I wasn’t crying and pleading to profess my nationalism. I wanted to break into tears… the fact that I had to do this. It felt like there was an invisible gun on my head,” said the Kuch Kuch Hota Hai director.
The Ranbir Kapoor, Anushka Sharma-starrer had found itself in the eye of the storm because of Pakistani actor Fawad Khan, who’s presence had provoked regional political outfit Maharashtra Navnirman Sena to threaten the release of the film. This was Raj Thackeray and his party’s manner of protesting against the unprovoked attacks from across the border on the LOC last year. Karan Johar had to ultimately release a video statement, seen as an apology to appease the firebrand right-wing party.
And would he do it again? “If I was in a similar circumstance and I had so much at stake, yes I would. I’m also a filmmaker and it’s a commercial product. And a lot of money is invested which is not entirely mine. Lot of money is at stake and it’s my job,” he said.