Mumbai: In a move to appease the Hairdressers' Associations of Mumbai, Shah Rukh Khan is planning to invite various barbers and hairstylists for the premiere of Billu, which was earlier titled Billu Barber.
"As far as I know, Shah Rukh is planning a premiere for the various barbers and hairdressers' associations, so they'd see and know that the film doesn't ridicule them in any way. In fact, the film is a homage to the hair-cutting technique. I can't understand how there can be a protest about the film or its title without anyone seeing the film," Priyadarshan told IANS.
According to Priyadarshan, Shah Rukh is not inviting friends from the industry for the screening.
The film was earlier titled Billu Barber, but when Hairdressers' Associations of Mumbai objected to the use of the word 'barber' in the title, Shah Rukh, who is producing the film and making a guest appearance, decided to change it.
"I'm in Chennai. Shah Rukh Khan tells me all the posters hoarding with credits will blacken out the word 'barber'. If it was hurting anyone's sentiments, I'm okay by it," Priyadarshan said.
He wonders how the word 'barber' could be okay in other languages and not in Hindi.
"Does it mean half the Indian population is not put off by the title and the other half is upset about it? I don't understand the controversy. And I've left it entirely to Shah Rukh to deal with it."
The director has no plans of being in Mumbai for the release of Billu. "I've done my best. And Irrfan Khan in the title role is the best homage that can be paid to any profession."
Priyan does wonder, and so do we, if we as a collective nation protest too much.
Irrfan Khan plays the title role and is paired with Lara Dutta in the film, which is releasing Friday. Shah Rukh will make a guest appearance along with Kareena Kapoor, Priyanka Chopra and Deepika Padukone.