Makers of Sunny Leone-starrer 'Mastizaade' have approached the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal after the Censor Board rejected certification to the sex comedy for the second time. The film, which was slated for a May 1 release, was referred to the Board's revising committee (RC) for a final call as the examining panel found the content 'extremely bold' for Indian sensibilities.
Sunny Leone in a still from 'Mastizaade'
Says an insider, "The makers were anticipating the Board to recommend several cuts, but were crestfallen when it outright refused to clear the film. They were served a two week backdated rejection letter on May 28 and have found the Board's reasons too flimsy to digest."
The source adds that during the RC screening, a female presiding board member had recommended an 'A' certificate for the movie along with some cuts instead of rejecting it altogether. However, her views were apparently not taken into consideration.
The film's producer Pritish Nandy is believed to have raised concerns over "lies" being conveyed to him. "Board chief Pahlaj Nihalani told the Information and Broadcasting ministry that RC member Nandini Sardesai was leading the charge in getting the film banned. However, when Nandy learnt about that, he refused to believe the lies. He knew that Sardesai was not present during any of the two certification screenings of the film," says another source.
Nandy remains tightlipped about the censor woes. "I cannot comment right now as the matter is pending before the Tribunal," he states.
Despite repeated attempts, Pahlaj Nihalani did not respond to our calls or text messages.