Hindu groups seek ban of Myers film "Guru" in India

Wed May 14, 2008 12:48am EDT
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By Nyay Bhushan

NEW DELHI, India (Hollywood Reporter) - "The Love Guru" has not received a warm welcome from some Hindu groups, who reportedly have requested that India's Central Board of Film Certification and the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting ban screenings of the Mike Myers comedy in India.

In March, U.S.-based Universal Society of Hinduism president Rajan Zed was one of the first to protest the film when he said it "appears to be lampooning Hinduism."

Media reports Tuesday quoted Bhavna Shinde, a representative of Mumbai-based Hindu organization Janjagruti Samiti and Sanatan Society for Scientific Spirituality as saying that the censor board should "stop distributing or screening the movie till Paramount has made necessary changes ... so that it will not hurt the feelings of the worldwide spiritual and Hindu community."

"We have officially not received any request from any Hindu organization regarding 'The Love Guru,"' a spokesperson at the Mumbai-based Central Board of Film Certification told The Hollywood Reporter.

The film has not yet been submitted by its distributors for censor clearance.

"A release date has not yet been finalized as we have various other films slated for the summer, such as the latest 'Indiana Jones.' We haven't yet decided when we will submit the film for censor clearance as there is still time," said a spokesperson at Mumbai-based Paramount Films of India, the film's distributor here.

Promoted with the tagline "His Karma is huge," "Guru," directed by Marco Schnabel, also stars Ben Kingsley, Jessica Alba and Justin Timberlake and includes a cameo by New Age guru and author Deepak Chopra.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

<p>Mike Myers poses for photographers at the premiere of 'Shrek The Third' in Leicester Square, London June 11, 2007. REUTERS/Kieran Doherty (BRITAIN)</p>