When cinemas were closed completely across the country in March 2020 due to the pandemic, we saw a significant increase in the consumption of content on OTT platforms. To the extent that exclusive movie releases and making movies and series exclusively for these platforms has become a thing. What most appealed to artists on these platforms is the freedom they bring. However, there has recently been some talk and talk about introducing censorship on OTT platforms. If nothing has been set in stone, filmmakers and artists have given their opinions on the same subject. In the middle of this Netflix also presented its first Telugu anthology titled Pitta kathalu which was led by Tharun Bhascker, Nandini Reddy, Nag Ashwin and Sankalp who all explored the dark side of relationships.
In an exclusive chat with Bollywood Hungama, the four directors expressed their views on OTT censorship.
I think the censorship of the cinema itself has not worked very well. We have big-ticket commercial movies in which women are abused, women are slapped, two-way songs, and there’s an awful lot of violence. Video games contain more gross stuff and violence than movies. What do we do with it? With the Internet, seriously, censorship really doesn’t make sense. What makes sense is that you categorize your movies, rated PG or a little higher and let people choose. The problem is, censorship comes down to a group of people and how they apply their thoughts to what is given on paper, to women’s issues and women’s safety, to the slander of women. What’s your interpretation of that, it boils down to that. So it can’t be one size fits all and this theory works for everyone. It’s hard, you can’t measure or judge art that way. Basically I have a problem with any sort of censorship God save us when it happens to OTT.
“I feel the same. When you have the power to choose to pause, rewind, close the player and watch it later. When you make the choice and it’s not public viewing when you can watch it at home, i think you should also have the choice to watch what you want. Why cut off the voice of filmmakers and artists? I don’t see the point. Internet is about democratization. I think that it’s the opposite, we try to control people and ask them to watch a specific type of content.
My take on censorship is that filmmakers need to be more sane and how do you define sensitivity, how is their education, how is their education, how they view society. So it’s up to them to make the right choice so as not to create panic among a group of people who obviously will not be in any way. I don’t know how the censorship works on OTT.
I agree with all of them because once you have internet and Youtube you can’t censor that. You can’t censor anything. You can choose, you can have the little satisfaction of cutting a scene or a dialogue on the OTT, but it could be out there anywhere and anyone can access it anyway. I think at one point the concept of censorship might have made sense, but not anymore.
Pitta kathalu is currently streaming on Netflix.
READ ALSO: Pitta Kathalu Review: Netflix’s First Telugu Anthology Explores Power Dynamics; but only creates an impact in certain parts
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