Inam - Film makers Struggle
Inam was pulled out from all theatres within a couple of days after its release. Lingusamy who is the distributor of the movie caved in to pressures when the ongoing shooting of "Anjaan" was targeted by the detractors. The producer made a quick opportunistic decision to pull out "Inam" and absorb a limited loss of a few Crores in order to protect Anjaan's theatrical business expected to be north of Rs.50 Crores. Santosh Sivan who is also the cinematographer of Suriya's Anjaan may absorb a portion of these losses since Lingusamy may have clubbed the distribution of "Inam" along with Santosh Sivan's Anjaan remuneration.
India not ready for Oliver Stone brand of moviemaking
"Inam" proves that India is not ready for Oliver Stone style of movie-making. Even though all of Oliver Stone's controversial movies have generated a national debate among media and public questioning the accuracy of facts and covering diverse raging opinions. But, none of these movies have been banned in the US and abroad. However, our Indian democratic system and the conflicting positions taken by central government, state government and the censor boards do not allow for such open dialogue on this particular controversial issue.
Movies about Sri Lankan Tamils are Risky
Time and again, it is proven that any movie portraying the plight of Sri Lankan Tamils is extremely risky to be portrayed on screen. Selvamani's Kutrapathirikai was seen as pro-LTTE and banned by Indian censor board before it released in 2007. Movies which were taking not-so-hard stance against Sri Lankan governments were cleared by Censors but, banned by the TN state (e.g., "Madras Cafe"). The movies that were able to make it to the screen were the ones that use this sensitive topic as a backdrop and superficial touch upon it as done by Mani Ratnam's Kannathil Muthamittal".
Poor timing of "Inam" Release
The timing of the movie could not have been any worse. This movie provided the right opportunity and plank for political parties to use it play the vote bank politics by tapping into Tamil sentiments. The producer and makers should have avoided the risky decision of releasing the movie ahead of elections. It is a poor judgment given the well-established sensitivity surrounding this issue.
If the movie had released shortly after the elections, the movie would have stayed in the theatres for a bit longer. It is still doubtful how successful the movie would have been in the box office despite raving critic reviews because our Tamil people are also not ready for yet another movie documenting the the painful wounds which are not healed.
Divisive Politics and Personal Attacks Against Santosh Sivan
The 12 time national award winner Sivan got the Padmashree award this year for his contribution to Indian cinema over the last two decades. Santosh Sivan expressed his sincere gratitude to the Tamil film industry in his acceptance note. In return to all his contributions to Indian and Tamil cinema, Santosh Sivan's was called by the protesters as a "Keralite who acted as a tool of the murderous Lankan regime by making this film that contains the poison of Sinhalese propaganda. Its screening in Tamil Nadu is akin to spitting on the Tamil race".
Shouldn't a film maker of Santosh Sivan's stature deserve better ? It is sad that Art has lost to politics, yet again.