After facing constant criticism for his film Waar, actor Shaan Shahid has finally spoken up. In an interview with the Gulf News, the actor cleared the air about the film, saying that Pakistan, like India, has a right to patriotic films.
Snubbing critics who termed Waar as an anti-India venture, he said, “I don’t think it’s an India-bashing film. It is based on the issues that people [in Pakistan] are facing right now.” Shaan is currently in the United Arab Emirates for the international premiere of his action thriller.
Shaan plays a retired military official in Waar, directed by Bilal Lashari. He has been called to foil a terror bid strategised by a Taliban outfit funded by India. Waar is, by far, the biggest budgeted film in Pakistan. It has also become the highest-grossing film of the country, beating the 1998 box office smash hit, Choorian.
“Every person has a right to be patriotic about his country,” says Shaan, defending the subject matter of the film. “With all due respect, as far as India is concerned, they have been making films bashing Pakistan left, right and centre anytime they want to. As an actor, I feel it is okay, because they are being patriotic Indians. For once, when a Pakistani wants to be patriotic, the whole world has a problem with it.”
Shaan’s cinematic career boasts a total of 475 films, but Waar has taken his fame to another level. “If a film is made in Pakistan, we are going to give our views and we are going to say what we think is right,” he said emphatically. The actor clarifies that the ‘waar’ (strike, in Urdu) that the film is not against India, but those that cause conflict within Pakistan. “That is one problem we are facing right now. It is a proxy war and there has to be some hand behind it, and we can nominate anybody [as responsible for it].”
With the upfront criticism hurled Waar’s way, Shaan is still hopeful that the film will get a theatrical release in India. “India should play a bigger brother and support our cause of cinema,” he said.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 13th, 2013.
Like Life & Style on Facebook, follow @ETLifeandStyle on Twitter for the latest in fashion, gossip and entertainment.
Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.
For more information, please see our Comments FAQ