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Danny Boyle defends choosing Slumdog... title

Reuters
Feb 19, 2009 at 11:49am IST

New Delhi: Slumdog Millionaire has been nominated for 10 oscars, won a Golden Globe, and a Screen Actors Guild Award but India is not impressed.

The director and producer of Slumdog Millionaire have been accused of exploiting child actors in the film, and people from the subcontinent have staged protests showing their dismay over the use of the word 'Slumdog' in the title which they say is offensive to them.

Its makers are under fire over British press reports suggesting child actors in the movie were exploited.

SLUMDOG DREAMS: The accusations may have resulted in some bad publicity, but big Oscar hopes remain.

Producer, Christian Colson says, "A long time ago, a year-and-a-half, maybe a little bit less than that, immediately after we cast the kids, we put in place a plan of action for their future welfare, over and above the money we paid them; we did that in consultation with their parents. The essential plank of that was education; they never attended school. We enrolled them in school for the first time in their lives, a fund was established to pay for any costs associated with their education, and medical emergencies, other emergencies, basic living costs."

The film's title has also offended some Indians.

They say the use of the word slumdog is offensive and one cinema showing the film was ransacked.

Director Danny Boyle says it's a term of affection and not meant to be humiliating.

"For us, "slumdog" was always a very affectionate term because for us it was a hybrid, a mixture of underdog and rooting for the underdog, and obviously he comes from the slums."

The accusations may have resulted in some bad publicity, but big Oscar hopes remain in store for the feature that could win Best Picture.

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