Is this Singh king?

There’s been some controversy over the upcoming film, ‘Singh is Kinng,’ [sic] starring Akshay Kumar and a host of other Indian actors I don’t know, scheduled to hit theatres on August 8th.SinghisKinng.jpg

Singh is Kinng is a story about Happy Singh, a Punjabi Sikh. He is very mischievous and gets involved in a number of disastrous situations, so the villagers plan to send him to Australia to bring back his fellow villager, Lucky Singh. It is then revealed that Lucky is a underworld Don in Australia. Then, in a accident, Happy saves Lucky but still Lucky becomes paralysed. Hence, Happy becomes the new King of the Australian Underworld. [link]

For those who haven’t been following the controversy- the problem revolved around the portrayal of Sikhs in the movie (physical appearance as well as particular scenes). I haven’t seen much information on the scenes, but am assuming that they involve explicit conduct that was found offensive to screeners’ moral sensibilities. As for the the physical appearance, I can’t exactly blame critics after seeing what “Singhs” look like in the movie… (see picture on right). Um… I don’t know who tied his pag or what it’s made of or what type of fashion statement the movie is trying to make, but I don’t think any Singh I know would ever wear that.

Akshay Kumar and the movie’s other creators have tried to appease the Sikh community and respond to demands for corrections.

Producer Vipul Shah held a press conference to clear the air of controversy surrounding the film which he says has no intentions of offending any person or community. “If I’ve made a mistake, lord forgive me and I will try to rectify my mistake,” says an apologetic Akshay. [link]

The movie’s creators have been able to make some corrections, but apparently not all scenes could be re-shot, and some scenes that were objected to will remain in the movie. [link] The SGPC’s demands have apparently been met regarding a change in plot:

We have advised the producer (Vipul Shah) to change the script, which portrays Akshay as a ‘Patit Sikh’ (a Sikh with trimmed beard), who later wants to rejoin the mainstream of Sikhs. He said that the film producer promised Sikhs in Mumbai on stamp paper that he will re-shoot the disagreeable parts. [link]

Apparently Gurbani was also misquoted, but fixed:

Another thing that maddened the Sikh community is a line of Gurbani narrated incorrectly. However, it was a grammatical mistake and the film maker has been demanded to re-dub it. [link]

A committee from the SGPC will get to review the movie before even the censor board does.

The production is expected to be completed by July 12, after which an SGPC committee will view the film, leaving no scope for any controversy at a later stage. Interestingly, the committee will watch the movie before it is sent to the censor board for its clearance. [link]

From what you’ve seen in trailers and ads so far, what do you think of how Singhs are portrayed in this movie? As uninteresting as the movie itself seems, I have to admit I’m intrigued by the idea of seeing Snoop Dogg in a sort of Punjabi movie… my 2 teenage/early 20s worlds, which were once so separate, colliding.

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36 Responses to “Is this Singh king?”

  1. Parvin Padham says:

    I don’t know who tied his pag or what it’s made of or what type of fashion statement the movie is trying to make, but I don’t think any Singh I know would ever wear that.you are right i think he should had asked any Singh how to tied pag, two year old can tied better than Akshay.whan you portrayed any community Please do lots of search .

  2. Parvin Padham says:

    I dont know who tied his pag or what its made of or what type of fashion statement the movie is trying to make, but I dont think any Singh I know would ever wear that.you are right i think he should had asked any Singh how to tied pag, two year old can tied better than Akshay.whan you portrayed any community Please do lots of search .

  3. Mewa Singh says:

    Point made.

    However the track is great. RDB with Snoop Dogg, this track is going to be around for a loooooooooooooooooong time from bhangra competitions to remix albums.

    here is a better version with snoop representing that 'pooooon-jabi'

    Singh is the King this is the thing….

  4. Kiren K. Mann says:

    Portrayal of Punjabi people in Hindi movies has always been wrong. Males are always loud and are always hitting people on their backs while they are talking to them. Women are usually air heads with ridiculous hair do's, like two braids on their heads. I stopped having two braids done on my me when I was like five years old!! These movie people need to go to Punjab and see how real Punjabi people live, talk, and how we dress ourselves. I saw a poster of Singh is King and Akshay Kumar looked really good on it. Now I saw this other picture of him and I am dissappointed again. I actually thought they got it right this time.

  5. Mewa Singh says:

    Point made.

    However the track is great. RDB with Snoop Dogg, this track is going to be around for a loooooooooooooooooong time from bhangra competitions to remix albums.

    here is a better version with snoop representing that ‘pooooon-jabi’

    Singh is the King this is the thing….

  6. sizzle says:

    Portrayal of Punjabi people in Hindi movies has always been wrong. Males are always loud and are always hitting people on their backs while they are talking to them. Women are usually air heads with ridiculous hair do’s…

    so the Punjabis are the italians of bollywood? i can't stand bollywood,so i have no idea.

    i think this is pretty annoying…it's almost slapstick. lucky? happy? mischevious? condescending as hell – perpetuates retarded stereotypes.

    what's interesting, though, is the amount of oversight that exists. there's a censor board and even the SGPC has a say in the production. and yet such an idiotic movie is still made? weird.

  7. Kiren K. Mann says:

    Portrayal of Punjabi people in Hindi movies has always been wrong. Males are always loud and are always hitting people on their backs while they are talking to them. Women are usually air heads with ridiculous hair do’s, like two braids on their heads. I stopped having two braids done on my me when I was like five years old!! These movie people need to go to Punjab and see how real Punjabi people live, talk, and how we dress ourselves. I saw a poster of Singh is King and Akshay Kumar looked really good on it. Now I saw this other picture of him and I am dissappointed again. I actually thought they got it right this time.

  8. sizzle says:

    Portrayal of Punjabi people in Hindi movies has always been wrong. Males are always loud and are always hitting people on their backs while they are talking to them. Women are usually air heads with ridiculous hair dos…

    so the Punjabis are the italians of bollywood? i can’t stand bollywood,so i have no idea.

    i think this is pretty annoying…it’s almost slapstick. lucky? happy? mischevious? condescending as hell – perpetuates retarded stereotypes.

    what’s interesting, though, is the amount of oversight that exists. there’s a censor board and even the SGPC has a say in the production. and yet such an idiotic movie is still made? weird.

  9. P.Singh says:

    I'll start by saying I'm not a fan of Bollywood flicks. I used to watch them with the familia when I was a kid, but mostly to see Amitabh and Dharmendra kick the crap out of 20 guys at any given time, all the while dodging machine-gun fire. I particularly liked the "tishun, tishun" sound effects when the bad guys were hit…then again, I also watched pro wrestling as a kid and thought Hulk Hogan was the freaking man.

    So, not having seen Singh is Kinng, and with no plans to see it, I think the movie could have some positives to it.

    The movie features a turbaned Sikh (albeit with shaved beard) as the hero. I'm sure it'll exaggerate regional, Punjabi stereotypes of the happy-go-lucky, loud, tough male, but then again, most characters in Bollywood flicks are over-the-top, unrealistic caricatures. Given the demeaning caricatures of Sikhs in movies past, this particular role may be a small step forward.

    On that note, I think the movie may indeed be a small step forward. In an overwhelmingly Hindu India, where the media has done a great job of vilifying Sikhs in general, it may be too much to ask for a full-fledged, keshdari Sikh to play the leading role (except in military themed movies). Start with the turban and move forward.

    Also, these flicks always involve the hero prancing about with half-dressed women. I'm not sure I like the idea of a keshdari Sikh playing such a role. Keshdari Sikhs, by the very nature of what their physical appearance represents, may be limited in the roles they take on, but that is perhaps a topic for another day.

  10. P.Singh says:

    I’ll start by saying I’m not a fan of Bollywood flicks. I used to watch them with the familia when I was a kid, but mostly to see Amitabh and Dharmendra kick the crap out of 20 guys at any given time, all the while dodging machine-gun fire. I particularly liked the “tishun, tishun” sound effects when the bad guys were hit…then again, I also watched pro wrestling as a kid and thought Hulk Hogan was the freaking man.

    So, not having seen Singh is Kinng, and with no plans to see it, I think the movie could have some positives to it.

    The movie features a turbaned Sikh (albeit with shaved beard) as the hero. I’m sure it’ll exaggerate regional, Punjabi stereotypes of the happy-go-lucky, loud, tough male, but then again, most characters in Bollywood flicks are over-the-top, unrealistic caricatures. Given the demeaning caricatures of Sikhs in movies past, this particular role may be a small step forward.

    On that note, I think the movie may indeed be a small step forward. In an overwhelmingly Hindu India, where the media has done a great job of vilifying Sikhs in general, it may be too much to ask for a full-fledged, keshdari Sikh to play the leading role (except in military themed movies). Start with the turban and move forward.

    Also, these flicks always involve the hero prancing about with half-dressed women. I’m not sure I like the idea of a keshdari Sikh playing such a role. Keshdari Sikhs, by the very nature of what their physical appearance represents, may be limited in the roles they take on, but that is perhaps a topic for another day.

  11. Reema says:

    I just watched the video all the way through, and I just noticed that the lead guy (is that Akshay Kumar?) is wearing the male version of a halter top.

    What kind of weird combo of hyper-masculine and hyper-feminine is this??

  12. Reema says:

    I just watched the video all the way through, and I just noticed that the lead guy (is that Akshay Kumar?) is wearing the male version of a halter top.

    What kind of weird combo of hyper-masculine and hyper-feminine is this??

  13. Anandica says:

    Does anyone know why they've spelt KING as KINNG? Just curious

  14. baingandabhartha says:

    [quote comment="3278"]Does anyone know why they've spelt KING as KINNG? Just curious[/quote]

    Try saying King with a forceful punjabi accent 😉

  15. baingandabhartha says:

    Akshay looks like an idiot. I cringe everytime I wonder if non punjabis really see the Sikhs like this…

  16. Anandica says:

    Does anyone know why they’ve spelt KING as KINNG? Just curious

  17. baingandabhartha says:

    [quote comment=”3278″]Does anyone know why they’ve spelt KING as KINNG? Just curious[/quote]
    Try saying King with a forceful punjabi accent 😉

  18. baingandabhartha says:

    Akshay looks like an idiot. I cringe everytime I wonder if non punjabis really see the Sikhs like this…

  19. Jodha says:

    Anadica here is the explanation from the Producer…

    But how did the 'King' become 'Kinng'? Laughs the man behind Aankhen, Waqt and Namastey London, Vipul Shah, "As a Producer I have my film's interest to caretake. We need success at any cost. My view has always been that whatever can be done to better the vibes of the film or add to the 'luck' factor should be done. So very simply, the extra N is only to bring it numerologically to an auspicious number." [link]

  20. Jodha says:

    Anadica here is the explanation from the Producer…

    But how did the ‘King’ become ‘Kinng’? Laughs the man behind Aankhen, Waqt and Namastey London, Vipul Shah, “As a Producer I have my film’s interest to caretake. We need success at any cost. My view has always been that whatever can be done to better the vibes of the film or add to the ‘luck’ factor should be done. So very simply, the extra N is only to bring it numerologically to an auspicious number.” [link]

  21. ItsMe says:

    This is a proper song by Inderjit Nikku

  22. ItsMe says:

    This is a proper song by Inderjit Nikku

  23. ruby says:

    We Sikhs are fed up of being part of stupid jokes.

    By Guru’s grace, one Sikh has earned the admiration of not only Indians but the whole World – Dr Manmohan Singh.

    64 hors to the decision and we all can make a difference.

    Please mail/sms to all your contacts and ask each one of them to appeal to the conscience of the SAD MPs .

    Their contact nos. are: 9814058001, 9868180859, 9868180584, 9868180531, 9868180331, 9868180682.

    Your investing a few minutes or Rupees can change the course of Sikh history now. PLEASE MOVE FAST!!!

    You are requested not sms profanities to these MPs. Please appeal to their human self.

    A message like this would be apt:

    Sikh Sangat appeals to you to prove to the world that you are SIKHS first and politicians later.

    Sikh history will be brightened by your one action:

    PLEASE ABSTAIN FROM VOTING !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  24. ruby says:

    We Sikhs are fed up of being part of stupid jokes.
    By Gurus grace, one Sikh has earned the admiration of not only Indians but the whole World Dr Manmohan Singh.
    64 hors to the decision and we all can make a difference.
    Please mail/sms to all your contacts and ask each one of them to appeal to the conscience of the SAD MPs .
    Their contact nos. are: 9814058001, 9868180859, 9868180584, 9868180531, 9868180331, 9868180682.
    Your investing a few minutes or Rupees can change the course of Sikh history now. PLEASE MOVE FAST!!!
    You are requested not sms profanities to these MPs. Please appeal to their human self.

    A message like this would be apt:
    Sikh Sangat appeals to you to prove to the world that you are SIKHS first and politicians later.
    Sikh history will be brightened by your one action:
    PLEASE ABSTAIN FROM VOTING !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  25. Ridhima says:

    [quote comment="3303"]Akshay looks like an idiot. I cringe everytime I wonder if non punjabis really see the Sikhs like this…[/quote]

    Agreed…but the number of views of Singh is Kiing videos on Planet Radio City tells a different story

  26. Ridhima says:

    [quote comment=”3303″]Akshay looks like an idiot. I cringe everytime I wonder if non punjabis really see the Sikhs like this…[/quote]

    Agreed…but the number of views of Singh is Kiing videos on Planet Radio City tells a different story

  27. […] post is just for fun.Aweek ago, a fellow langa-(w)riter askedwhichSingh was really King? As the buzz for the upcoming “Singh is Kinng” movie continues, many had heard the news […]

  28. Jay says:

    I'm looking forward to the riots, death threats and violence, all in the name of protecting the 'good image' of Sikhs, which ends up making Sikhs look like intolerant, violent bigots. That's how these protests about 'hurt sentiments' usually end up.

  29. Jay says:

    I’m looking forward to the riots, death threats and violence, all in the name of protecting the ‘good image’ of Sikhs, which ends up making Sikhs look like intolerant, violent bigots. That’s how these protests about ‘hurt sentiments’ usually end up.

  30. Sonny says:

    I maybe atheist now, but this movie still offends me, why you ask?

    It's not that I'm bothered whether the creators think Sikhism is wrong or silly for whatever reason, it's that it reveals their utter ignorance of who the Punjabi people are. Here in the UK, everyone is pretty much taught the basics of what Sikhism is yet back in India, people still do not know.

    It's kind of sad in a way, to know my ancestors fought and died, so that some lame Bollywood movie could stereotype and misrepresent what a Singh is supposed to be.

  31. Sonny says:

    I maybe atheist now, but this movie still offends me, why you ask?

    It’s not that I’m bothered whether the creators think Sikhism is wrong or silly for whatever reason, it’s that it reveals their utter ignorance of who the Punjabi people are. Here in the UK, everyone is pretty much taught the basics of what Sikhism is yet back in India, people still do not know.

    It’s kind of sad in a way, to know my ancestors fought and died, so that some lame Bollywood movie could stereotype and misrepresent what a Singh is supposed to be.

  32. M.K. says:

    here is another poster from the movie

    http://img520.imageshack.us/img520/8232/akshaysin

    seriously, it is just ridiculous..

  33. M.K. says:

    here is another poster from the movie

    http://img520.imageshack.us/img520/8232/akshaysinghiskinngshortie1.jpg

    seriously, it is just ridiculous..

  34. tia says:

    HONEST REVIEW……3/10……MAAT DEKHO MOVIE…ITS SHEER WASTE….IT WILL BE MAJOR FLOP OF YEAR (to watch.,poor script…jokes that can't make u laugh.akshays talent wasted)UNTIL PEOPLE REALISED ADVANCE BOOKING BEFORE RELEASE BECAUSE OF FALSE HYPE ..IS LIKE FOOLING URSELF….WHICH SOME DID ..BUT CLD TRY SAVE SOME HEADACHES….MY GROUP LEFT MOVIE BEFORE INTERVAL

  35. tia says:

    HONEST REVIEW……3/10……MAAT DEKHO MOVIE…ITS SHEER WASTE….IT WILL BE MAJOR FLOP OF YEAR (to watch.,poor script…jokes that can’t make u laugh.akshays talent wasted)UNTIL PEOPLE REALISED ADVANCE BOOKING BEFORE RELEASE BECAUSE OF FALSE HYPE ..IS LIKE FOOLING URSELF….WHICH SOME DID ..BUT CLD TRY SAVE SOME HEADACHES….MY GROUP LEFT MOVIE BEFORE INTERVAL

  36. […] can also read about our discussion about the movie Singh is Kinng hereand about the commodification of the Sikh identity, with the introduction of the Kenneth Cole ad […]