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Pahlaj Nihalani Takes On The Casting Couch



Having bid his role as  the CBFC chairperson goodbye, Pahlaj Nihalani is  ready to shock the audiences as a producer.His first step back into production post-CBFC is Julie 2, a follow-up to director Deepak Shivdasani’s 2004 film Julie which starred Neha Dhupia as a hooker.

Julie 2  promises to shock purist and probably give the CBFC sleepless nights.  Apparently the film deals with the casting couch in Bollywood.

Says  Nihalani who is  the presenter and all-India distributor  of Julie 2, “Julie 2 will shock the nation. It is a true of mirror of what young people have to go through in the film industry and a warning to all youngsters  who leave their homes  and come  to Mumbai  from small towns  to try their  luck in Bollywood.I personally know so many young strugglers who are used and abused.”

Nihalani says  young aspirants who are not  children  of the  film industry are sexually exploited  in Bollywood. “Children  from the film industry are spared for obvious reasons. But young people from outside are not spared. Not only by producers. And it’s not just girls who are exploited. It’s also boys who are sexually exploited not  only by producers but casting directors, casting agents and middlemen . Many of  these middlemen  are actually pimps. They promise  roles to boys and girls in exchange of sexual favours on behalf of actors,producers, casting directors.”

Nihalani says  sexual exploitation of strugglers is  rampant in the entertainment industry. “There is so much sex being thrown around. Julie 2 is about one  such exploited struggler played by newcomer  Raai Laxmi.”

Now that he is  on  the other end  of the firing line how does Nihalani think his film will be treated  by the  CBFC?

“Well…it IS  a  film for adults. So I expect  an ‘A’ certificate.I would have given it an ‘A’ certificate  if  it came  during tenure as chairperson.As far as sex and nudity goes, it is a film about  sexual exploitation and the incidents are true. In fact  I   know  of so many youngsters who are sexually abused in exchange  of promised roles. Hasn’t the censor board decided to be liberal? This  is their chance to prove it.”


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