Posted by Fenil Seta
Request to lie low by Chinese government or chock-a-block schedule — what’s keeping Zhu Zhu away from Tubelight?
Mohar Basu (MID-DAY; June 28, 2017)
Chinese star Zhu Zhu attended the Shanghai Film Festival recently. However, the actress has been missing from all the action around Salman Khan-starrer, 'Tubelight' (pre-release promotions and post-release success bashes), which features her in a prominent role.
Even as Zhu Zhu's social media remains crowded with pictures, she has done zilch to promote her Indian film. If rumours are to be believed, the Chinese government was sceptical about the way the 1962 Sino-Indian War was portrayed in the Kabir Khan film, requesting the actress to maintain a distance.
A source says, "She has been asked to stay away from Tubelight. Even the media had reached out for interactions, but they were told she is busy and unavailable for interviews. The China Film Group Corporation (CFGC) greenlights all Indo-Chinese associations, however, this project wasn't approved by them. Considering the strained relations between the two countries during the 1960s, the CFGC wasn’t sure how Kabir Khan would approach the subject of the film."
While that may explain the reason behind Zhu Zhu's absence, sources close to the film's production house rubbish this as rumours. "She is working on a prominent Chinese production and it was impossible for her to take time off to promote the film in India. She is constantly in touch with Kabir. It's just bad timing," says an insider.
So, do the makers plan to release the film in China, like Dangal? "The production house wanted to release Tubelight in China. Given Zhu Zhu's popularity, the film would have appealed to the masses. However, China's import quota system allows only 34 foreign titles a year.
The production house has approached the CFGC, but Tubelight's release in China hasn't been approved yet," says the source. Zhu Zhu, Kabir Khan and Amar Butala, (CEO, Salman Khan Films) remained unavailable for comment.