Bellbottom, starring Akshay Kumar, was released in Indian cinemas and select international cinemas on August 19. The film, which began filming and was completed during the pandemic last year, is the first big-budget Bollywood movie to be released in theatres. Sadly, the film has apparently been banned in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Kuwait due to its inappropriate content for public viewing.
A source informed Bollywood Hungama, “The second half of Bellbottom shows the hijackers taking the aircraft to Dubai from Lahore. As per the actual incident that took place in 1984, U.A.E Defence Minister, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, had personally handled the situation and it was the U.A.E authorities who had nabbed the hijackers. In Bellbottom, Indian officials, including the character played by Akshay Kumar, are shown as heroes of the episode. They also keep the U.A.E Defence Minister in dark about their operation. So there’s a strong possibility that the Censor Board in the Middle Eastern countries must have taken objection to it and hence banned it.”
According to reports of August 19, the Censor Board of the United Arab Emirates, which is allegedly depicted in a negative light in the film, may accept and clear the movie for showing. In reality, in regions of India where cinemas have reopened, Akshay Kumar’s Bellbottom has been released, while Maharashtra has yet to make a decision on reopening the theatres.
Directed by Ranjit M Tewari, the film also stars Vaani Kapoor, Huma Qureshi, and Lara Dutta in pivotal roles.