Kerala

Producers ban Shane, seek compensation

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‘New-generation actors causing trouble under the influence of drugs’

The Kerala Film Producers’ Association on Thursday banned actor Shane Nigam after he shaved off his hair and beard, thus disrupting the shooting of the under-production movie Veyil in which he was to appear in different looks.

The association also triggered a huge controversy that is likely to rock the Malayalam film industry when it accused some of the new generation actors of causing trouble on film sets under the influence of narcotic drugs.

Addressing a press conference here, association president Rejaputhra Renjith went to the extent of asking the police to check the caravans in which many actors spend long hours. Producer and association office-bearer Siyad Koker said that these actors are suspected to be using drugs such as LSD.

No sweeping statement

The office-bearers, however, were quick to clarify that the accusation was not a sweeping one and that it was applicable only to ‘some’ new generation actors.

The Association of Malayalam Movie Actors (AMMA) was rather evasive about the whole affair.

“As far as I understand, the producers were not alluding to our members,” said its general secretary Edavela Babu without elaborating further.

The producers’ association said two under-production films – Veyil and Kurbani – featuring Mr. Nigam stood shelved and demanded that the actor pay the producers over ₹7 crore that had gone into the making of these films so far.

Asked if there was any chance of leniency towards the actor, Mr. Koker asked Mr. Nigam to first dub for the movie Ullasam for which the producer had already paid him in full.

The association hinted that the ban could be extended to other film industries as well.

Mr. Renjith said the decision to ban the actor had been conveyed to AMMA.

‘Justice denied’

However, Mr. Nigam accused the association of denying him basic justice by choosing to ban him without hearing his side of the story.

Talking to The Hindu over the phone, Mr. Nigam said he had neither lodged a complaint against any producer nor had he declined to do any movie.

On the charge that he was high on drugs, Mr. Nigam asked: “Why not subject all members of AMMA and the producers’ association to a blood test. I am ready if all of them are willing to do it.”

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Printable version | Dec 16, 2019 1:11:42 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/producers-ban-shane-seek-compensation/article30110036.ece

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