Ahead of the premiere of the highly anticipated Malayalam movie King of Kotha, the core team of the film, led by Dulquer Salmaan, recently visited Hyderabad for a pre-release event. The occasion was made even more delightful with the attendance of Telugu stars Rana Daggubati and Nani. They graced the event to show their support for the movie and their friend Dulquer.
Meanwhile, Rana Daggubati’s speech at the event has become a topic of discussion within film circles. During his address, he took a veiled dig at a Bollywood actor while showering praise on Dulquer. Though Rana didn’t explicitly mention the actor’s name and referred to her as a “big Hindi cinema heroine”, netizens quickly deduced that he was referring to Sonam Kapoor, who had acted alongside Dulquer in the 2019 sports romantic drama The Zoya Factor.
Following the widespread conversation sparked by his remarks, Rana himself stepped forward to apologise, clarifying that his “words were misinterpreted”. He also referred to Sonam as his “friend” in the statement.
In his speech, Rana expressed, “Back when we were both studying acting, Dulquer was my junior. We formed a friendship during those times. He is a very polite person.”
I am genuinely troubled by the negativity that has been aimed at Sonam due to my comments, that are totally untrue and were meant entirely in a light-hearted manner. As friends, we often exchange playful banter, and I deeply regret that my words have been misinterpreted.
— Rana Daggubati (@RanaDaggubati) August 15, 2023
“Years later, he was doing a Hindi film. I won’t mention the film and the producers were my friends. Since the shooting was happening closer to my house, I went to the sets to see them. He was at a corner speaking to a spot boy, who was from Kerala. A big Hindi cinema heroine was talking to her husband over the phone. It was in between takes. If it was anything urgent, it made sense, but they were shopping over the phone. Dulquer was patient. But, she forgot her lines and was distracted. If I had a bottle in my hand, I would have crushed it. But, Dulquer remained calm and gave as many takes as he was asked. He put up with the pranks played on him. I sat with the producers later and gave them an earful,” India Today quoted Rana as saying.
After his words sparked controversy, Rana issued an apology on social media and noted: “I am genuinely troubled by the negativity that has been aimed at Sonam due to my comments, that are totally untrue and were meant entirely in a light-hearted manner. As friends, we often exchange playful banter, and I deeply regret that my words have been misinterpreted.”
“I take this opportunity to express my heartfelt apologies to Sonam and Dulquer, both of whom I hold in great esteem. I hope this clarification puts an end to any speculation and misunderstanding. Thank you for your understanding,” he added.
Helmed by veteran filmmaker Joshiy’s son Abhilash Joshiy, who is making his directorial debut with the movie, King of Kotha is a period gangster film and will hit theatres this month as an Onam release.