Did Israeli Filmmaker Nadav Lapid Call Kashmir Files A "Brilliant Movie"?
Media outlets misquoted Lapid from his comments during an interview to India Today, where he simply acknowledged that other people could have found it to be a brilliant film.
Several mainstream media outlets falsely reported that Israeli filmmaker and jury head of the International Film Festival of India 2022 Nadav Lapid, who called the Vivek Agnihotri-directed film The Kashmir Files "vulgar" and "propaganda", had now changed his opinion and called the film "brilliant".
BOOM found that the media outlets misquoted Lapid from his comments during an interview by India Today's Rahul Kanwal, where he stated that he was aware that there are other people who found The Kashmir Files to be a brilliant film. This was then taken out of context, and misreported as Lapid expressing his own views.
Hindustan Times, DNA, Entertainment Times, Live Hindustan, and Jagran English, were some of the news outlets found sharing the misleading quote on their respective websites. This claim was also shared by Bollywood actor Anupam Kher, who played a lead role in the controversial film.
On Monday, November 28, 2022, Lapid addressed the crowd during the closing ceremony of IFFI in Goa, where he stated, "It (The Kashmir Files) felt to us like a propaganda and vulgar movie that was inappropriate for an artistic and competitive section of such a prestigious film festival."
His comments kicked up a furor in India, with the Israeli ambassador issuing an apology on behalf of the Israeli government, and members of the right-wing admonishing the Indian government and the festival organisers for inviting Lapid.
What The Media Reported....
Hindustan Times, in their article on this matter, quoted Lapid as saying, "On propaganda: no one can determine what is propaganda, I accept this fact, it's a brilliant movie. What I have done it's my duty to say what I see. it's a very subjective way." The article cited Lapid's interview to India Today's Rahul Kanwal as the source for this quote.
The other media outlets used the exact same quote as HT, and similarly cited his interview to India Today as the source.
.. What He Really Said
BOOM viewed the entire interview of Lapid by India Today's Rahul Kanwal, which has been cited as the source for the quote stating he found the film to be 'brilliant'.
At the 6.05 mark into the video, Lapid is heard saying, "I totally respect and accept the fact that there are many people who love this movie, who think it is a brilliant movie."
He is clearly heard acknowledging that his view on the film is subjective, and that there are other views which could find the film brilliant. This part of the interview is grossly misrepresented to suggest that he called the film brilliant.
Here is a comparison of his actual quote, and the misquoted comments:
|What Lapid said to India Today||How some mainstream media outlets quoted him|
"I totally respect and accept the fact that there are many people who love this movie, who think it is a brilliant movie."
"I accept this fact, it's a brilliant movie."
During the interview, Lapid further defended his initial comments about film by saying, "Exactly as much as people have the right to love the movie. Of course (they have) the full right to claim that it is a brilliant, unbelievable movie. I have the right to claim the opposite. And what I did is my duty toward the festival that invited me. The festival which invited me in order to express my opinion about the movies. And to say the truth as I see it, of course its subjective."
Lapid also responded to allegations that his comments on the film was a form of denial of the exodus of the Kashmiri Pandit community from Kashmir, which forms the focus of The Kashmir Files, by saying, "I was never ever speaking about the Kashmir tragedy. And I (am) totally not taking back what I said. But I will (sic) sorry if people were hurt because of this. I was talking about the movie, The Kashmir Files, that was done based on this tragedy."
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