File image of Deepika Padukone in a scene from Padmavati.

‘Padmavat’ Gets Jan. 25 Release Date

After facing several roadblocks, Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s controversial film Padmavati, retitled Padmavat, seems set for a Jan. 25 release, sources in Viacom18 Motion Pictures said today.

The film, mired in controversy over its plot line, has been cleared by the Central Board of Film Certification, which has asked the makers to change the title and suggested other modifications.

The film was earlier scheduled to be released on Dec. 1.

Though Viacom18 Motion Pictures and Sanjay Leela Bhansali have not released an official statement yet, sources in the production house said the film will release on Jan. 25, one day before Republic Day.

Trade analyst Taran Adarsh announced the release date on Twitter.

The producers are trying to cover some lost ground by releasing the film ahead of a long weekend (Jan. 26 is a Friday) but the movie will clash with Akshay Kumar starrer Padman.

Asked about a possible face-off with the Sanyay Leela Bhanshali firm, Akshay Kumar said he was not worried. “It is not about competition. It is a very big day, a big week, so all the films can come, both the films can release on that day. Every film has the right to release whenever they want, and I am happy for them.”

Padman producer Prerna Arora, too, sounded optimistic. “We are releasing ‘Padman’ on Jan. 25, and are not nervous or worried about the clash. We are confident about our film. I think two big films can come together. If the film is good it will do well commercially irrespective of a clash. We are happy for ‘Padmavat’ (release),” she said.

The makers of Manoj Bajpayee-starrer Aiyaary, earlier slated to be released on Jan. 26, have decided to postpone its release to Feb. 9. Commenting on the possible clash with Padmavat, Jayantilal Gada, one of the producers said, “We will move our release date to Feb. 9.”

On Dec. 28, the Central Board of Film Certification decided to give Bhansali’s period film a U/A certification along with some modifications and suggested that the film’s title be changed to Padmavat to befit the source material, Malik Muhammad Jayasi epic of the same name.

The board also suggested modifications in disclaimers and relevant changes in the song Ghoomar.

CBFC chief Prasoon Joshi had said the producers and director of the film were ‘completely in agreement’ with the proposed modifications.

The censor board had appointed a special panel to review the film as many Rajput organisations were up in arms against the portrayal of queen Padmini in the film even though historians are divided on whether she actually existed.

The period romance features Shahid Kapoor, Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone in lead roles.