Bollywood director Ram Gopal Varma stooped to a new low when he posted a tweet commenting on Reuters’ film journalist Shilpa Jamkhandekar’s looks as she gave his film 'Veerappan' a scathing review.
Varma’s misogynistic tweet read, “So as per your review “Veerappan” the film is as beautiful as your face,” and was accompanied by Shilpa’s picture.
The tweet has since been taken down, but not before screenshots were taken and Varma was rapped for his sexist and shallow comment.
In other tweets RGV attempted to justify his jibe by saying that the reviewer had personally bitched against him rather than his film and he was just returning the favour.
If someone becomes personal in bitching the film maker beyond the film,the film maker also in return can bitch the person beyond the film— Ram Gopal Varma (@RGVzoomin) May 28, 2016
The power of social media is that everyone has the same weapon ..if one bitches the other,the other also will bitch in return— Ram Gopal Varma (@RGVzoomin) May 28, 2016
However, while Shilpa’s review is indeed unrelenting in the sense that it takes apart the film, it is difficult to understand what part of the review Varma could have interpreted as a personal insult to him. Even the first line of the review, which says that Varma’s skills as a director have “plummeted drastically in the last few years,” makes a comment on Varma’s capacity as a director. Now, how this could constitute “beyond the film” is anyone’s guess.
Later, after deleting the controversial tweet due to the backlash he faced, Varma did muster an apology but not without mentioning how he was making a special case for Shilpa. These “apologetic” tweets were accompanied by Shilpa’s picture.
I never apologise but for the first time I sincerely am apologising...I just got carried away..Sorry Shilpa pic.twitter.com/YC7p5iUVmO— Ram Gopal Varma (@RGVzoomin) May 28, 2016
What’s more, his attempt at a light hearted apology fails miserably when he says that he got “carried away” by virtue of being a Donald Trump follower.
I got carried away and the reason is this stupid that am a follower of Trump not for policies but for personality pic.twitter.com/RHiZRDTdoF— Ram Gopal Varma (@RGVzoomin) May 28, 2016
But he doesn’t stop there.
I am not justifying but when he had differences he said a fellow presidential nominee's face looks like a horse pic.twitter.com/qOu93n46QB— Ram Gopal Varma (@RGVzoomin) May 28, 2016
Now, how Trump’s xenophobia justifies Varma’s sexism will remain a mystery. However, after blaming Trump for his chauvinism, RGV said that he may not have had enough alcohol.
Maybe I had too much Trump or maybe not enough Vodka but whatever it is I am sorry once again pic.twitter.com/smnS05YyCz— Ram Gopal Varma (@RGVzoomin) May 28, 2016