Controversial Hindi film Padmaavat has been banned in Malaysia. The Bollywood epic began worldwide release on Thursday, grossing an estimated $16.8M in India and setting a new record in North America this weekend. The Deepika Padukone-starrer evidently had one screening in Malaysia, but according to local reports was banned by the Film Censorship Board on Saturday because of elements deemed sensitive to the Muslim-majority community. However, the board’s chairman Mohd Zamberi Abdul Aziz told Malaysia Today that an appeal has been filed and will be reviewed tomorrow. Directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali, the film had throughout production and as recently as last week sparked a furor in India, inciting violence and death threats. Based on Malik Muhammad Jayasi’s epic 16th century poem, there had been confusion over perceived historical inaccuracies and a false rumor that the movie contained offensive sexual content. It ultimately cleared Indian censors with a series of stipulations. Paramount is releasing the Viacom18-produced film in the UK, Australia, New Zealand and the Middle East.
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