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Anurag Kashyap: Vikas Bahl and I work in different set-ups

The Manmarziyaan (2018) filmmaker revealed that he is no longer on talking terms with his Phantom Films co-founder, Vikas Bahl, who helms Super 30 (2019) next.

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Since last March, filmmakers Anurag Kashyap and Vikas Bahl haven't spoken. The co-founders of Phantom Films, with Vikramaditya Motwane and Madhu Mantena, have been working separately on different projects over a year now. Bahl was accused sexual harassment by a female employee at Phantom and Kashyap discussed his break with Bahl.

In an interview with the newspaper The Times Of India, Kashyap said, “My stand on this is the same as it was back then. Vikas works in the company, he is a partner and nothing against him has been proven. But mutually, we’ve decided that we will work separately, in separate premises.”

The filmmaker stated that all other discussion about their relationship were rumours and he put the record straight when he said, “Vikas and I are not on talking terms. We will continue making films together but I see no point in making him uncomfortable. We can work in different set-ups. I don’t feel the need to sort anything out, because no one came forward to say or prove anything, at that time.”

Kashyap himself has been a survivor of abuse and he said when he tried speaking about it, it was brushed aside.

“We have conditioned ourselves to believe that abuse comes with the rite of passage. I was a boy when I was abused. When I tried speaking about it, people said, ‘Hota hai yaar’. There are very few people who take a stand in such matters and this will take a long time to change. I fought these battles so many times,” he told the daily newspaper.

Furthermore, he said, “You are perceived as the backstabber because you stood up for someone else. Fighting against abuse is pointless if the victim doesn’t speak up. My integrity and intentions will be questioned if the person abused doesn’t stand up for himself or herself and only I do the talking. It’s a cycle and it will take time to set things right.”

It seems that the female employee in Phantom has decided not to pursue the matter further and Kashyap respects her decision, but chose to keep things separate with Bahl.

He also shut down allegations that he stopped going the Phantom offices because of Bahl. "I have worked from home for 25 years, even when we set up Phantom. Yes, Vikas and I don't work on the same projects and we work from different premises. I work from a room and I am happiest doing that," he said.

Kashyap’s second film in 2018, Manmarziyaan, will have its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival. Starring Abhishek Bachchan, Taapsee Pannu and Vicky Kaushal, it is due to be released in India on 14 September.