Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther. Photograph:( Others )
Even as Marvel Cinematic Universe's latest offering Black Panther is being celebrated for bringing in a cultural change, our very own Censor Board has found something 'objectionable' in the film. According to media reports,the CBFC reportedly muted the word 'Hanuman' from the Ryan Coogler-directed film
In the film, King T'Challa's rival was M'Baku, the head of the Jabari tribe which prays to Hanuman. In one of the scenes, M'Baku says 'Glory to Hanuman' which was muted by the Censor board to avoid 'hurting religious sentiments'.
Winston Duke, the actor who plays M'Baku in the film, in an interview to Variety Magazine spoke about the importance of understanding and contextualizing of the Jabari tribe's religious beliefs in order to avoid negative perception."They haven’t been affected by colonialism and all the narratives that are associated with developing a sense of inferiority and people comparing them to animals. To them, this is just who they pray to, and they find their strength and agency in this religion. So being a bit gorilla-influenced was a sense of pride for them," he said.
A still from Black Panther featuring the Jabari tribe. (Others)
Interestingly, in the comic, the Jabari tribe is showed to worship a Gorilla-God which in the film was changed to being a worshipper of Hanuman.
Also read: Black Panther review
The 'Hanuman' reference could have been a nod to Marvel's enormous fan base in India but unfortunately, the CBFC felt it may be taken the wrong way.
Black Panther features Chadwick Boseman in the titular character and is the first Superhero film with a complete non-white cast.