KIFF Highlights: SRK And Amitabh Bachchan Make Rare Speeches, Flag Cancel Culture And Censorship

The Kolkata International Film Festival was inaugurated by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

Tanya Malik
kolkata international film festival amitabh bachchan

The 28th edition of the Kolkata International Film Festival (KIFF) was inaugurated recently at the Netaji Indoor Stadium. It was a star studded event with celebrities like Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Shatrughan Sinha, Sourav Ganguly, Arijit Singh, Raj Chakrabarty, Rani Mukerji, Subhashree Ganguly, Jaya Bachchan in attendance among others.

This year, the event was unlike all others. Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan, two of the biggest stars of the showbiz were seen raising subjects like freedom of expression, and social media toxicity among others for the first time out in public. So, we thought of quickly taking you through the highlights of the KIFF inauguration.

Kolkata International Film Festival Inauguration Ceremony

Shah Rukh Khan's First Comments After Pathaan Controversy

Shah Rukh Khan and Deepika Padukone starrer Pathaan is all set to release on January 25, 2023. Ahead of its release, the film is making headlines because of the Twitter boycott trend. People are coming out in protest of the film after the release of its first track, Besharam Rang. Deepika Padukone can be seen donning a saffron outfit in the track and netizens are now mocking her for hurting the religious sentiments of saints. Some of the users are questioning why the makers chose a saffron-hued bikini for the song.

King Khan during his speech at KIFF talked about the role of cinema and the narrowness of social media. He said, “The collective narratives of our times are shaped by social media. Contrary to the belief that the spread of social media will affect cinema negatively, I believe cinema has an even more important role to play now. Social media is often driven by a certain narrowness of view that limits human nature to its baser self. And it’s somewhere that negativity increases social media consumption and thereby increases its commercial value as well. Such pursuits enclose the collective narrative making it divisive and destructive.”

Don't Miss: From Shah Rukh Khan To Akshay Kumar, Celebs Who Believe In Cross Faith

"We haven't been able to meet for a while, but the world is becoming normal now. We are all happy and I am the happiest. And I have no qualms in saying, that no matter what the world does, me and you, and all positive people in the world are ALIVE," he concluded his speech.

Amitabh Bachchan On Freedom Of Expression

Through his journey in Indian cinema, superstar Amitabh Bachchan has rarely got vocal about a sensitive subject. However, this time, he left the audience at KIFF surprised by remarking on censorship. He said, “The 1952 Cinematograph Act set out the structure of censorship as it stands today upheld by the film certification board (Central Board of Film Certification). But even now, ladies and gentlemen--and I am sure my colleagues on stage will agree--questions are being raised on civil liberties and freedom of expression.”

Don't Miss: Besharam Rang: Pathaan's First Track's Out, 3 Things That Caught Our Eye

Fans Have A Meltdown Moment Seeing 'Rahul And Tina' Together

Shah Rukh Khan and Rani Mukerji were seen together at the Kolkata International Film Festival. In one of the moments from the inauguration now going viral on social media, Mukerji was seen kissing Khan's hand. Fans are calling it the cutest thing they have seen on the internet lately.

Some Bolly buffs also shared videos from the event on Twitter and called it a 'Raichand re-union' with Shah Rukh Khan, Jaya Bachchan, Amitabh Bachchan, and Rani Mukerji in attendance.

Coming back to KIFF, the festival will showcase 183 films this year, including 130 feature films, 52 short and documentary films from across 42 countries. The event will conclude on December 22.