Renowned cinematographer PC Sreeram said on Tuesday that he had opted out of a film starring the controversial actor Kangana Ranaut because he “felt uneasy” working with her.

Sreeram announced his decision on Twitter without naming the project or its director: “Had to reject a film as it had Kangana Ranaut as the lead .Deep down i felt uneasy and explained my stand to the makers and they were understanding. Some times its only abt what feels right . Wishing them all the best.”

In her response, Ranaut tweeted, “...I don’t know what exactly made you uneasy about me but I am glad you took the right call, wish you all the best.”

Ranaut has made several provocative public statements since Sushant Singh Rajput’s death by suicide on June 14 in Mumbai. She has claimed, without evidence, that Rajput was murdered. She used Rajput’s demise to revive her claims that the Hindi film industry is run by a cabal of families who discriminate against so-called outsiders. She questioned the religious affiliations of Aamir Khan’s children. She alleged that the Mumbai film industry is seething with drug users and addicts.

Ranaut on Monday was given Y-plus security after she claimed that she feared for her life in Mumbai and that the metropolis felt to her like “Pakistan-occupied Kashmir”. Her remarks earned sharp responses from the Shiv Sena, which leads the coalition of parties ruling Maharashtra. Ranaut thanked Union Home Minister Amit Shah for granting her security, which entitles her to a Personal Security Officer and 10 armed commandos.

Ranaut’s most recent films Manikarnina: The Queen of Jhansi (2019), Judgementall Hai Kya (2019) and Panga (2020) have been average grossers or have underperformed at the box office. Her forthcoming projects include the Ronnie Screwvala-produced action drama Tejas, in which she plays an Indian Air Force pilot. She has shot some portions of Thalaivi, AL Vijay’s bilingual biopic on former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa.

Sreeram’s credits include some of Mani Ratnam’s most well-known films, such as Nayakan, Agni Natchathiram, Thiruda Thiruda and O Kadhal Kanmani. Sreeram has also worked with Kamal Haasan in Apoorva Sahodragal and Thevar Magan. In 1995, Sreeram directed Kuruthipunal, the Hindi remake of Govind Nihalani’s Drohkaal. Sreeram has also shot all of Balki’s Hindi films, from Cheei Kum (2007) to Pad Man (2018).

Thoongatha Vizhigal, Agni Natchathiram (1988).

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