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Anurag Kashyap praises Newton, defends director in Secret Ballot controversy

Kashyap has tweeted in support of director Amit V Masurkar stating that Newton is as much a copy of Secret Ballot as The Avengers is of Watan Ke Rakhwale (1987).


Filmmaker Anurag Kashyap on Sunday, 24 September, spoke out in defence of Newton — India's official entry for Oscars' foreign language film category — amidst claims that the movie is inspired by a 2001 Iranian movie titled Secret Ballot.

Newton is getting a raving response at the box office. Apart from word-of-mouth, the fact that the film will represent India at the Oscars came out on the day of its release itself, has given it a much-needed spurt in footfalls. According to trade experts, the movie registered "remarkable" and "unprecedented" growth just a day after its opening day.

Amit Masurkar was told of Secret Ballot while making Newton but never watched it

Kashyap tweeted: "That day when you wake up to the news that a deserving film makes a deserving box office... Newton shines. Super happy."

On news that the film is copied, he quipped: "Newton is as much a copy of Secret Ballot as The Avengers is of Watan Ke Rakhwale."

The movie, produced by Manish Mundra of Drishyam Films, had its world premiere at the prestigious 67th Berlin International Film Festival, where it even won an award.

Standing up for its genuinity, Kashyap said: "Newton is an award winner from Berlin fest and I can promise you those curators watch more films in a year than rest of us do in a lifetime."

Newton becomes first film to receive Rs1 crore grant from Central government

While Newton, which stars National Award-winning actor Rajkummar Rao, revolves around a government employee who struggles to supervise voting in a forest area of Chhattisgarh, controlled by Maoists, Secret Ballot is described as a movie which focuses on the life of a lady ballot officer who visits a barren and desolate place to plead with voters to cast their votes and take part in the elections.

Director Amit V Masurkar has already given his take on the controversy, saying: "The story was born from my heart. I had no idea about Secret Ballot."

Meanwhile, meeting the film team's expectations, the film is attracting audiences to theatres.

Trade analyst Taran Adarsh tweeted on Sunday, 24 September, "Newton shows remarkable 162.5 per cent growth on Saturday. Friday Rs96 lakh, Saturday Rs2.52 crore. Total: Rs 3.48 crore India biz."

Komal Nahta, another trade expert, wrote, "A 200 per cent jump on Saturday over Friday collections of Newton. Almost unprecedented!"