Joining the dots of Kashmir's missing link from 'Mission: Impossible Fallout'

New Delhi, July 30 : There is a difference between the "Mission: Impossible Fallout" seen in Paris and the one seen in India -- the missing Kashmir link.

In a special screening of the film for select global media, including IANS, in Paris earlier this month, "Mission: Impossible Fallout" showed a strong connect and presence of India -- more importantly of Kashmir -- in the narrative.

The story started with a small pox epidemic breaking out in Kashmir, with India coming on the radar of the after-effects of an attack in several cities around the world. To wrap the affairs and save the world, the team crosses borders and heads to Kashmir to avert the danger which is threatening a large population of India, Pakistan and China.

The makers transformed a valley of New Zealand into a small village of Kashmir to shoot the portion.

But when you see the India cut, there are snow-capped mountains, there's a mention of Nubra valley and Siachen Glacier, there's a glimpse of an Indian soldier and there's Tom Cruise's team fighting against the odds to save the world from a nuclear attack, but what is missing is the mention of where all the action is taking place.

Clearly, there has been a 'fallout' of the Kashmir connect from the "Mission: Impossible Fallout" version, which released in India on July 27.

According to the buzz, the makers had to delete references to Kashmir for its India release as suggested by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC). A censor board circular has surfaced online, and it directs the makers to remove the visuals of maps misrepresenting the boundaries of Jammu and Kashmir, and the word India-occupied Kashmir.

IANS tried contacting CBFC chairperson Prasoon Joshi, but did not get a response.

What has been omitted from the film? As the film approaches its climax, Cruise as an Impossible Missions Force (IMF) agent Ethan Hunt asks "where do we go" after being shown a portion of Southeast Asia map, and then it directly leads the team in a car driving on a road in a mountainous terrain.

The team discusses the problem in hand as well -- saying that the nuclear attack is threatening a large population.

In the cut which was screened in Paris, there was a prominent mention of Kashmir, Pakistan and China.

Film and trade business analyst Girish Johar is yet to see the film, but he explained the possible reason behind the omission.

"The makers are sensitive to the Indian audience and their needs. They didn't want to unnecessarily act as a catalyst to all the brewing tension which is under the cover. Right now, the Southeast Asia region is a little volatile," Johar told IANS.

"We know the political backdrop that we are having at the moment. So, the makers are sensitive towards this and wanted to avoid this unnecessary confusion that the movie might rake in... They wanted to completely avoid it." In an interview to IANS, "Mission: Impossible Fallout" director Christopher McQuarrie had expressed his disappointment as he was unable to come to India to shoot the sequence.

"Everything we did in the movie was designed around where the action can take place. We wouldn't have had a permission to shoot a helicopter chase sequence anywhere in the world apart from New Zealand," he said, adding that he would have loved to shoot the movie in India.

McQuarrie explained that he picked Kashmir as the backdrop as they wanted "something politically dangerous".

The sixth instalment in the "Mission: Impossible" franchise has got good reviews, and amassed $153.5 million worldwide, including $92 million from 36 international markets, reports variety.com.

The Paramount film, distributed in India by Viacom18 Motion Pictures, also stars Ving Rhames, Simon Pegg, Rebecca Ferguson, Michelle Monaghan, Sean Harris, Alec Baldwin, Henry Cavill, Angela Bassett and Vanessa Kirby.

(Sugandha Rawal can be contacted at sugandha.r@ians.in)

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