How Kamal Haasan fought 'cultural terrorism'

A storm rages around the actor-director’s Vishwaroopam. Here’s the story so far.

Kamal Haasan's film shown red light

Vishwaroopam is banned for two weeks by the Tamil Nadu government after protests from Muslim groups. Kamal Haasan describes the ban as “cultural terrorism” and moves court.

Not yet, says the judge

The Madras High Court rules that Vishwaroopam cannot release till January 28, after it is reviewed by a judge. Superstar Rajinikanth appeals to Muslim groups to end protests. The blackout spreads to Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh with limited screenings in Kerala.

A judicial screening

Justice K Venkatraman of the Madras High Court watches Vishwaroopam. DMK chief M Karunanidhi urges Muslim groups to resolve differences with Kamal Haasan. Malaysia cancels shows a day after the film releases after a directive from the Home Ministry.

Milord, the case for and against

Arguments are presented in the Madras High Court. Kamal Haasan’s lawyer calls the ban is “unconstitutional.” The Madras High Court lifts the ban but Kamal Haasan isn’t past the finish line yet. Meanwhile, the film opens to packed houses in Karnataka amid police security.

The end, and a new beginning

A day after the government lifts the ban from the film, Kamal Haasan withdraws his petition from the Madras High Court. Finally, there is a release date. Vishwaroopam will be out in Tamil Nadu on February 7, nearly two weeks late.

Full stop for Vishwaroopam

The Madras High Court rules in favour of the ban after the Tamil Nadu government appeals. Vishwaroopam will not release in the state till February 6. Minutes before losing his case, Kamal Haasan agrees to delete scenes containing references to the Quran.

Jayalalithaa speaks, hope for Kamal Haasan

Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa defends the ban saying police could not have guarded the over 500 cinemas that would have screened Vishwaroopam. She hints at a happy ending, saying the government would facilitate a compromise between Kamal Haasan and Muslim leaders.

Row settled; Kamal Haasan agrees to mute seven scenes

After hectic negotiations, the makers of Vishwaroopam and protesting Muslim groups reach a compromise. Kamal Haasan signs an agreement, saying he will mute seven scenes. The release date of the movie in Tamil Nadu to be announced soon.