Naseeruddin Shah lauded Deepika Padukone's decision to visit the JNU campus earlier this month. (Photo: Express archive).
Lauding the courage of actor Deepika Padukone for standing with the students of Jawaharlal Nehru University who were attacked inside the campus, Bollywood actor Naseeruddin Shah said 'these people have more courage and less to lose.'
Speaking to The Wire on the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Act and the silence of big actors on the issue, Shah said, "It’s understandable why the established figures of the industry don’t speak up. However, one wonders how much do they have to lose? Will it kill you? You have to laud the courage of a girl like Deepika (Padukone), who is at the top and yet takes a step like this.”
About the patriotic movies that are being made today, Naseeruddin Shah said film industries have always pandered to those in power. "I really wonder how much conviction there is in these filmmakers who are helping rewrite history," he said.
He, however, praised films like Masaan, Gully Boy and director Anurag Kashyap for their craft. “Films like Masaan, Gully Boy or what Anurag (Kashyap) keeps making would not have happened if the 70s directors would not have paved the path for the younger makers working today. Craft wise, the inexpensive movies made today are far superior than the ones we made in the 70s. I really envy these actors. I wish I was that good when I was their age. Politically though, (movies like) Albert Pinto haven’t had a follow-up generation. However, the protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act has united all the free-thinking people of the nation and certainly great art will emerge from that,” Shah said.
Coming down heavily on actor Anupam Kher who had posted cryptic tweets on the violence during the anti-CAA protests, Naseeruddin Shah said he is a clown and should not be taken seriously.
“Anupam Kher doesn’t need to be taken seriously. He is a clown. Any numbers of his contemporaries from FTII and NSD can attest to his sycophantic nature. It’s in his blood. He can’t help it,” Shah said.