10 Bollywood films that courted controversy before release

If you are a Bollywood fan, then you know movies thrive on controversies. Several times, movie went through censor board…

10 Bollywood films that courted controversy before release

Ram-Leela (Photo Credits: Facebook)

If you are a Bollywood fan, then you know movies thrive on controversies. Several times, movie went through censor board scanning and got disapproved for bold content, fell a prey to fringe groups protesting against the release for inaccuracy of facts or manipulating the story line for filling seats at the box office. Despite all this, some movies manage to release, while some get delayed and few don’t even get a chance to hit the screens. Here is a list of films that courted controversies even before their release.


The Bhatt campaign is infamous for raising temperatures of their films with bold scenes and sizzling chemistry. Murder featuring Emraan Hashmi and Malika Sherawat had everything to draw flak from viewers and groups. The film ended up stirring controversy all across the country before its release because of the glimpses that viewers got to see in the movie trailers and posters.



Mr Perfectionist was not so perfect during the release of Fanaa as he raised his voice against the height of Narmada Dam. The ruling party at that time banned the release of the film in Gujarat. They didn’t just stop here, as they banned all products that the actor endorsed! Becoming voice of the voiceless has also a price to pay.

Hate Story

Hate Story didn’t enjoy much liberty unlike its successors as the Censor Board thought the film was too bold for a young audience and couldn’t be aired on television. The poster of the film also sparked a controversy for picturising women in an inappropriate posture.


The film didn’t have any controversial aspect but the song Sadda Haq faced the wrath of censor board, as it featured a flag with “Free Tibet”. It sparked much controversy from fringe groups who wanted to either ban the film or remove the song. Eventually, the film made its release but had to blur the flag as it sent wrong political message to the nation.

The Dirty Picture

The film which was even labeled as a ‘dirty’ picture by many fringe groups, got the top spot on the controversial mountain back in 2011 as the posters were not appropriate. Unnecessary intimate scenes were also one of the reasons for Silk Smitha’s brother to send a legal notice to the makers of the film.

Oh My God

A film based on God and God men can never go well with the religious groups of the nation. Many Hindu religious groups didn’t want this film to release in India. Also, there was a complaint against the actors of the film.


India is a nation with many sentiments and when Sanjay Leela Bhansali decided the title of the film, it offended many as the film showed two worshiped deities in the wrong light. People filed an FIR against the makers and eventually the Bhansali had to change the title of his film to Goliyon Ki Rasleela Ram-Leela.


One lesson learnt from the controversy of Oh My God is that you just can’t escape the wrath of religious groups of India when you make a film on God and God men. The film which became one of the highest grossing films of all time, also got itself into a debate with numerous groups post its release.


Based on the play, Hamlet, this Shahid Kapoor starrer had its fair share of negative publicity as it faced backlash from fans for the portrayal of Indian Army and Kashmiri’s in the film. Despite everything, the film went on to becoming a success and a turning point in Shahid’s career.


The latest to join this list is the upcoming film Padmavati, which is based on the life of Rani Padmavati. Numerous fringe groups believe the makers are manipulating the facts and hurting sentiments of the Rajputs. A group of people vandalised the film set in Jaipur back in April and has also been demanding a pre-release of the film for them.