I love this. Ram Gopal Varma announces that he'll be making yet another movie about the fascinating Mumbai underworld some months ago. At first we refer to it as 'D-company', and that's how the film is discussed - as one about Dawood Ibrahim, who's living it up on the other side of the border. So months go by, Randeep Hooda cultivates a nice frenchie, finds a pair of sunglasses that look just like Dawood's (the triangular kind with the rounded corners), and posters of the movie - now called just 'D' - are stuck up everywhere.
And then, five days before the movie is released - and this is the part I enjoy most - Varma allegedly receives a call from Dawood, who asks what the movie is about, ie. "Is it about moi?" No, Varma is reported to have said. You are a muslim based in Pakistan, and my character is a hindu who lives in Bombay.
And yet, replace Dawood with the censor board, nothing changes. In Maximum City, Suketu Mehta writes of an instance where Mahesh Bhatt is before the censor board, who haven't seen his to-be-released movie, Zakhm, and are wondering what bits to cut. This happens after the all the hard work is done and it is on the verge of release. Replace Zakhm with Black Friday or numerous other films. The filmmaker has no idea of who is going to object to what and when. Most probably, questions will be asked a day or two before the film is released. This benefits no one. Perhaps there could be proper channels and a timeframe to air greviances. That way the business of making films could be less complicated. How that'll stop Dawood from calling up people at odd hours I don't know, but it'll prevent the censor board from clowning around too much as and when it wants.