Shah Rukh Khan won hearts all over again at the special event to celebrate the box office collections of Pathaan over Rs.500 crore plus. The event was organized by Yash Raj Films (YRF), the producer of the movie, at a hotel in Mumbai for SRK’s fans and the media.
Apart from SRK, present at the event were Pathaan’s other two leads, Deepika Padukone and John Abraham, and director Siddharth Anand. Among the many headline-worthy quotes by SRK at the event, the important one towards the end was where he indirectly conveyed that films are made for entertainment and not to spread communal disharmony.
“Deepika Padukone is Amar, I’m Shah Rukh Khan and Akbar, and John Abraham is Anthony,” said SRK, adding that much like the popular Manmohan Desai film Amar Akbar Anthony, the industry makes films to spread happiness and joy, and entertainment. This was an obvious reply to the trolls who had been spreading negative news about Pathaan and its alleged religious connotations.
In the 1977 film Amar Akbar Anthony, the three leads (Amitabh Bachchan, Vinod Khanna, and Rishi Kapoor) who turn out to be brothers belong to different religions – Hindu, Muslim, and Christian – the religion they were raised in. SRK compared the film’s characters with Deepika, him, and John, who belong to different religions in real life, and are working towards the same goal as actors and producers – entertaining the audience.
SRK admitted, “Humse galtiyaan bhi hoti hai (we make mistakes), but…our motive behind making films is quite clear. We want to spread happiness, love, kindness, and brotherhood.”
He explained that even if John or he is playing the bad guy in a film, they are doing it just to entertain and that none of them were bad in real life.
Trolls had spread the hashtag Boycott Pathaan and Boycott Bollywood before the film’s release, and some people in the country had spread hatred towards the song Besharam Rang from the film, objecting to the supposedly saffron and green outfits of Deepika Padukone and Shah Rukh Khan has some religious significance to Hinduism or Islam.
Fans and moviegoers in general have denounced the negative rumors and watched Pathaan multiple times to make it an all-time blockbuster in Indian cinema. The event marked the return of Bollywood and the celebration of cinema as a theatrical medium.