The Legend of Maula Jatt release in India: Fawad Khan’s Pakistani film pushed indefinitely

Image Source : INSTAGRAM/FAWAD KHAN Poster of The Legend of Maula Jatt featuring Fawad Khan

The Legend of Maula Jatt release in India: Indian viewers won’t get to watch Pakistani blockbuster “The Legend of Maula Jatt”, starring Fawad Khan and Mahira Khan, on the big screen just as yet. An INOX official said the film that was to release on Friday has been postponed — perhaps indefinitely. “We have been informed by the distributors that the release of the film has been postponed. We were told this two-three days ago. No further date has been shared with us,” an official from the multiplex chain told PTI.

Directed by Bilal Lashari, “The Legend of Maula Jatt” is an adaptation of the 1979 cult classic “Maula Jatt”. However, the producers have said it is neither a remake nor a sequel. The film, which released in Pakistan on October 13, is the highest-grossing Pakistani film of all time with box office returns of $10 million.

An industry insider said the film’s release was stalled due to resistance from certain sections. “Zee Studios had acquired the rights of ‘The Legend of Maula Jatt’ as they were expecting the film to do well. But because of the resistance from certain sections, the decision was made to not release the movie,” he told PTI on the condition of anonymity.

Multiplex chain PVR Cinemas had shared the India release date of the film on its official Instagram page earlier this week but deleted it soon after.

Rajender Singh Jyala, chief progamming officer, INOX Leisure Ltd, had told PTI last week that the film would be played in Punjab and a few theatres in Delhi where there are Punjabi speaking people.

Ameya Khopkar, president of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena’s cinema wing, said on Twitter today that the film’s release has been stalled after a warning given by the party. “The screening of the ‘The Legend of Maula Jatt’ has been completely cancelled,” he said.

Mahira and Fawad are familiar to Indian audiences through their popular Pakistani drama “Humsafar” and also through Bollywood — Fawad, who was most recently seen in the superhero series “Ms Marvel”, has featured in “Khoobsurat”, “Kapoor & Sons”, and “Ae Dil Hai Mushkil” while Mahira appeared in Shah Rukh Khan-starrer “Raees”.

The last Pakistani film to get a theatrical release in India was “Bol” starring Mahira in 2011. Before that was “Ramchand Pakistani” starring Nandita Das and Rashid Farooqi in 2008. “Khuda Kay Liye”, which included Fawad in the ensemble cast alongside Naseeruddin Shah, came in 2007. Pakistani actors stopped being cast in Indian productions following the 2016 terror attack in Uri in which 19 Indian Army personnel were killed. The decision came amid demands by various political outfits to ban Pakistani artistes from Indian films and from performing here.

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