Blanket ban on smoking, drinking in films not feasible: SRK

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New Delhi, Feb 3 (UNI) Terming the depiction of smoking or, for that matter, drinking or crime on the screen a 'creative leeway' for a filmmaker, Bollywood 'King Khan' Shah Rukh says there should not be a blanket ban on showing smoking or drinking in films.

''Showing somebody smoking or drinking in films is something that is part of a creative leeway in filmmaking. Also, any negative aspect highlighted in films, be it smoking, drinking, rape or murder, does not constitute a glorification of these actions.

Rather, it is a part of the storyline or a character's graph in the film. There should not be a blanket ban on anything,'' Shah Rukh told newspersons during a visit here last evening.

Commenting on the increasing clamour from intellectual and political circles for imposing a ban on smoking and drinking scenes in films, Shah Rukh said, ''if one was to make films only on good things or goodness like, say, Gods or Godesses, then neither will you enjoy nor me.'' To unveil 'Don't drink and drive' campaign, launched by the liquor company Diageo Radico Distilleries Pvt limited, to raise awareness about responsible drinking and encouraging people to never drink and drive, Shah Rukh said it was wrong to say that today's generation automatically got inspired by films to do negative things, adding, ''though, I do admit there may be a certain percentage that does get affected.'' At the same time, he admitted every filmmaker holded a responsibility on what to show in their films. ''Infact, I can say with great pride that in 17 years and 60 films, I have been quite a responsible actor in terms of what kind of entertainment has to be given to the audience,'' Shah Rukh said, adding, as an actor, he had never given a message of smoking to the viewers through his film portrayals.

''Even in case of 'Don', the film shows that Don is trying to quit smoking, while he tells Kareena Kapoor in the film that he has been trying to do so as it kills,'' he said.

On demands to quit smoking from various quarters, 'King Khan' said, ''I have said it again and again and I am very clear on it that nobody should smoke. I was impressed by the fact that the Health Minister has asked me to give up smoking. I will definitely try to quit that in my personal life.'' Shah Rukh said he did not feel that his reel life portrayals of negative characters had an impact on his real life. ''However, in case of films, there are always things that are somewhat larger than life. But I don't think the reel life will take away the good and hard work that I stand for in real life,'' he said.

''I feel that a lot of people who love me and appreciate me for for my work do so because of the person I am. It's not just because of the way I dance on the screen or the way I look. There has been a certain kind of attachment with people since the last 17 years.

They think I stand for what most people in the country aspire for and for values that one can follow,'' Shahrukh said.

''In any case, I do not think the youth is blind. They know what I stand for and they will be able to shift and take the good and not the bad,'' he said.


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