Art and politics have always made strange bed fellows. Most artistes live in a world of their own. Isolated from the brutal reality of war, stress and strife, they create images that derive their strength from the isolated imagination rather than the crowded real world. And yet, in recent times the relationship between cinema and politics has become so intertwined that filmmakers find it hard to sustain let alone rationalize their isolation. We saw an upsurge of indignation in the film industry after 26/11. And now with Indian students in Australia being attacked, filmmakers seem to be ready to hit Australia where it hurts the most. Their foreign exchange. If our boys can't be safe in Australia, Bollywood refuses to shoot down under.
Rensil D'Silva: "Shoot in Australia? Not at all."
Kalpana Lajmi: "It is indeed an extremely unfortunate. But I don't hold the entire Australian nation responsible. If my film requires an Australian backdrop, I wouldn't hesitate in shooting there."
Anees Bazmi: "Being a true Indian and a human being, I condemn these acts of violence. My conscience won't permit me to shoot in Australia."
Anubhav Sinha: "I feel racism is a very personal prerogative today. It is not a governmental policy. It has its nuisance value. While traveling abroad, I do encounter racial bias every now and then. I shot in Australia some years back and faced some smirking hurdles. I never returned."
Sajid Nadiadwala: "No. I won't shoot in Australia. And why only Australia? I won't have any relations with any country that disrespects Indians."
Ken Ghosh: "Nope. I definitely won't shoot in Australia. These attacks are very surprising. I always found the people to be very friendly."
Subhash Ghai: "Certainly not until Australia gives full respect and protection to Indian students."
Sujoy Ghosh: "Yup. I'd shoot. And maybe carry a couple of hockey sticks to beat the crap out of those racist a**holes""
Siddharth Anand: "My entire film Salaam Namaste and Tara Rum Pum were shot in Australia. I strongly condemn what's happening there. As of now, I'd still like to believe Australia is a very friendly nation. The people there have been very warm and hospitable during both my films shot in their country. But something drastic has to be done to stop these attacks. Until then, I'd definitely be in two minds about shooting in Australia."
Sanjay Gupta: "I completely condemn the attacks. Australia is not my kind of place to shoot anyway."
Pritish Nandy: "Yes, I'd shoot in Australia, just as I would shoot in Goa, despite the murder of Scarlett Keeling and other foreign tourists. We shoot in locations that suit the script. We can't take patriotism to such absurd lengths."
Satish Kaushik: "Shoot In Australia? Not at all. Why should we celebrate the beauty of a country when the hearts of certain people in that country is not beautiful? They should learn from us. Atithi Devo Bhava."
Kabir Khan: "It's very important to make a distinction between prejudices practiced by a government and racist attacks by some disgruntled lunatics. However, to show our disapproval of the attacks it'd better not to shoot in Australia at the moment."
Ravi Chopra: "No, definitely not. If our kids are not welcome, I don't want to be any part of Australia."
Rohit Jugraj: "Hate crimes are deplorable and disgusting. And considering the fact that Australia itself is a land risen out of strife and animosity, the Australians should've taught their kids to be tolerant and welcoming. I don't want to shoot in Australia, unless it's a film about these hate crimes. Maybe our own take on Baz Luhrmann's Australia called 'Oust-ralia'. They need to learn a thing or two about love and dignity."
Suneel Darshan: "I'd love to shoot in Australia. Has strife kept us out of Kashmir? These disturbances are detrimental to both cultural and business relations."
Sanjay Gadhvi: "If I've to shoot in Australia, I'd strongly recommend to my producer not to do so considering the current scenario."
Jagmohan Mundhra: "Even though I think that most Australians are not racists, the frequency of attacks on Indian students is a matter of concern. As a mark of protest, I won't shoot in Australia until the government takes a firm stand against racial violence and sets an example by giving severe punishments to the perpetrators of these attacks."
Ananth Mahadevan: "These attacks have no doubt hurt all sections of society. There're bound to be repercussions on cricket, tourism and higher education. If I've to shoot in Australia, I'd have to think twice."
Tarun Mansukhani: "No. Considering the inaction by the Australian government against racial abuse, I wouldn't shoot in Australia. I don't think that we should consider any joint venture with Australia until we get the same protection provided to their citizens. Indian students in Australia are a source of revenue for the Australian government. In exchange the least we expect them to do is safeguard our lives."
Antony D'Souza: "You can't castigate a whole nation for the actions of a few."
Sajid Khan: "I feel an entire nation can't be tarred because of a handful of extremists. We'll only make these elements stronger by being scared. At the same time, we want to see Australia take action against these hate attacks. Until then, I won't shoot in Australia to show my solidarity with Indians who are attacked anywhere in the world."
Soham Shah: "Anything that goes against the dignity of our countrymen is a collective insult to all Indians. We must not shoot in a country where we are discriminated against."
Vipul Shah: "Shoot in Australia? Not at all. I'm shocked by their hatred. That their so-called progressive culture can be so bigoted is unbelievable. Australia must know we are united in fighting those who attack one of us. We'll make them change their attitude."
Zoya Akhtar: "I won't visit Australia till the government takes drastic steps to stop the violence."
Vikram Bhatt: "No chance. I'm deeply angered. In fact, I was planning a film in Australia. But, not any more."
Kunal Kohli: "Mr. Bachchan's refusal to accept the doctorate should be starting point for us all to take similar action. I definitely would NOT shoot in Australia till the attacks are stopped and definite laws are implemented to prevent such attacks."
Madhu Mantena: "I've been encouraging friends abroad to shoot in Mumbai after 26/11. By the same yardstick, we can't give up Australia because of a few demented individuals."
Abbas-Mustan: "It would be a risk for the entire starcast to shoot in Australia given the present circumstances."
Bunty Walia: "Nope. A country that doesn't look after my countrymen will never figure in my work and leisure scheme."
Abhishek Kapoor: "Given the present circumstances, no, I wouldn't shoot in Australia."
Priyadarshan: "No. I wouldn't shoot in Australia even if my script required."
Imtiaz Ali: "I do not know the specifics yet. Will learn and respond"
Sanjay Leela Bhansali: "What is happening to our children in Australia is unforgivable and goes beyond the interests of art and culture. However, if you ask me, I wouldn't want to shoot in Australia until they sort this matter out. And why go to hostile country when our country is so beautiful?"
John Mathew: "No. I wouldn't shoot in Australia"
Boney Kapoor: "Are you kidding? No way will I shoot in Australia."
Madhur Bhandarkar: "First ensure the safety of our boys, then, we'll see about shooting in Australia. What guarantee is there for anyone's life in a country where a handful of people are terrorizing foreigners? Given the circumstances, I don't want to risk my cast and crew's life in Australia."
Akbar Khan: "The time has come to seriously consider that the clash of nationalities will spell doom on the world. We've to challenge any power that comes in the way of bonding humans of all nationality. As a filmmaker, I won't be cowed down by stray incidents. If my script demands me to shoot in Australia, I will."
Bhavna Talwar: "I am definitely not shooting in Australia, unless the Australian government takes steps to ensure the safety of Indians and resorts to the strongest measures to put a stop to racial hatred."
Manish Acharya: "The recent attacks are too frequent to be random. There's a systematic racist bias being displayed. And in such a situation, I wouldn't want to shoot there. For the sake of a film, I cannot put the safety of my cast and crew at risk."
Aparna Sen: "No, I wouldn't shoot in Australia. What's happening there is deplorable."
Abbas Tyrewala: "Shoot in Australia? Yes, preferably with a Smith & Wesson."