International megastar Akshay Kumar took another step towards his goal of monumental social change in India, as he released the much-anticipated trailer for his upcoming film ‘TOILET: EK PREM KATHA’ – and it’s an instant huge hit! In fact the first day it had over 11 million hits on Facebook and now has over 17 million hits on YouTube.
The trailer has appeared to have set a new benchmark in Bollywood, riding on a moral and social higher ground on a fabric beyond the usual drama and dance – a film which portrays a man’s struggle to bring about a revolution for his love.
A love story with a satirical message that is set against the backdrop of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s initiative to improve sanitation across India, ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyan’ (‘Clean India Movement’), Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, is the latest statement of intent from Akshay Kumar in his bid to galvanise modernisation and equality in his home country. The film tackles the fundamental need to provide households across the nation with a functioning toilet to reduce open defecation in public, which is intricately linked to issues of women safety.
In the trailer, superstar Akshay Kumar emerges as a dominant figure, trying to initiate grassroots change as he battles both society and bureaucracy. He nails the message when he is seen saying “Shahjahan ne apni biwi ke liye Taj Mahal banwa diya, hum apni biwi ke liye sandaas na bana paye”, which roughly translates to “Shahjahan had built the Taj Mahal for his wife, but I couldn’t build a toilet for my wife”.
Combining romance, the very best of comedy and hard-hitting truths, the trailer was officially unveiled during the India vs. South Africa Trophy cricket match on Sunday 11th June, ahead of the film’s official release on 11th August. The short clip instantly received glowing reviews, with fellow celebrities flocking to social media to express their delight with the release. Filmmaker Karan Johar tweeted; “Super trailer Akshay. Can’t wait to watch this exceptionally relevant and entertaining film”. Meanwhile Anil Kapoor, Kapil Sharma, Sidharth Malhotra, Bipasha Basu, Sidharth Malhotra, John Abraham and Sonam Kapoor also jumped at the chance to get behind the trailer.
Judging by the impassioned reaction across social and international media, TOILET: EK PREM KATHA already looks set to be a ground-breaking contribution towards spotlighting the problems associated with open-air defecation through the world-binding tool of cinema. The trailer has not only received more than 30 million views (Facebook + YouTube) – no small feat when you consider the short amount of time it has been in circulation – it also received an endorsement from Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Twitter for the message it’s sending out on the Clean India initiative.
The upcoming Hindi-language film is directed by Shree Narayan Singh, best known for his work editing smash hits such as Baby (2015), M.S Dhoni: The Untold Story (2016) and Rustom (2016), and co-produced by dream team Neeraj Pandey and Akshay Kumar himself. The ensemble of cast is led by Akshay Kumar, who is joined by Bhumi Pednekar (Dum Laga Ke Haisha), Anupam Kher (Bend It Like Beckham, Silver Lining Playbook) – to condense a star-studded cast. TOILET: EK PREM KATHA also marks the 20th film which has Akshay Kumar and Anupam Kher join cinematic forces.
TOILET: EK PREM KATHA is a satirical, quirky, humorous, light-hearted take on India’s open-air defecation issue, aiming to tug the hearts of every single lover, who is willing to go to any lengths for their beloved.
A revolution in the making, TOILET: EK PREM KATHA uses humor to educate the world and bring to light the issues surrounding sanitation and women safety in India. Not to be missed, be sure to catch the film’s release internationally in cinemas through Reliance Entertainment on 11th August – and remember, don’t forget to flush!
ICYMI Catch the trailer here!
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Toilet Ek Prem Katha consists of a real-life love story between Keshav from Nandgaon (Mathura) and Jaya from Barsana (Mathura) whose love transcends across barriers of society and tradition but is challenged by the most unexpected hurdle, a toilet.
This is the true story of millions of those women in rural India who till date, walk a few kilometres away from their homes just to be able to relieve themselves, at break of dawn or fall of dusk and face the risk of rape/kidnapping. The film is a satirical, quirky, humorous, light-hearted take on the matter, aiming to tug the hearts of every single lover, who is willing to go to any lengths for their beloved.
Toilet is set in two villages near Mathura, where at least 80% of households are without any access to a lavatory, and begins with the marriage of Keshav & Jaya. Conflict comes knocking on the first day of their marital life, when Jaya leaves Keshav’s house for good, after discovering that there is no toilet. Distraught and desperate, Keshav sets out on mission to win back his love- by battling against the age old traditions, mind-set and value system of his country.
From the panchayat to the sanitation department, from the role of the government to the superstitions of the villagers, it’s Keshav’s journey from being a jugaadbaaz to standing up for a cause that we follow throughout the film. A journey in which he might realise the difficulties attached to making the toilet a household regular.
Will the staunch villagers ever budge? Will Jaya give in to Keshav’s love and make adjustments? Will things remain the same in this country? Do mind-sets ever change? Will India be a safer country for women by simply making toilets? Only time will tell