We've been hearing about the Central Board Of Film Certification's (CBFC, commonly referred to as the 'Censor Board') shenanigans for most of this year.
Several films released this year, such as Anushka Sharma-starrer NH10 and upcoming Sunny Leone-starrer Mastizaade, have been victims of the apparent whims and fancies of the Board's chief Pahlaj Nihalani, who has famously sworn to clean up Indian cinema.
The latest film to suffer Nihalani's ire is Kanu Behl's upcoming directorial debut Titli. HuffPost India spoke to Behl and filmmaker Dibakar Banerjee, who has produced the film, after reports said that the Board had asked the makers to tone the language in Titli down by a considerable amount.
"We were asked by the chairman to dilute the strong language in three scenes by 50% and remove all other instances from the rest of the film," said Banerjee, in a phone conversation. "We complied because we had a film to release. Kanu has worked hard on it for two years."
Behl said: "The film isn't defined by gaalis; it's about the characters. So, if it's the difference between the film not being seen at all and being seen, then I don't have a problem removing them. But yes, I do think it's absurd and ideally, I would have wanted them to be there. Why even keep 20 gaalis — which is how many remain now — in the film, then?"
Now, with the somewhat-watered-down version of the film all set to release this Friday, Behl has appeared in a new sketch created by The Viral Fever that takes on the Board's seemingly arbitrary stance on strong language (a controversial 'cuss word list' was proposed, and then officially rejected in February). In the 10-minute-video, Behl (playing himself) is shown consulting the 'Pre-Censor Board', a panel comprising filmmakers who give him advice on how to tackle the censors.
Lending support by appearing in this video are prominent Hindi film directors Mahesh Bhatt, Sudhir Mishra, Hansal Mehta, and Banerjee himself. Indie filmmakers Vasan Bala (Peddlers), Ajay Bahl (B.A. Pass), and producer Guneet Monga (The Lunchbox, Masaan) also feature in this sketch.
Oh, and there's a scene-stealing cameo by avant-garde filmmaker Kamal Swaroop (Om-Dar-B-Dar) in there as well.
Watch the video above.