Provoked, which is one of the most talked about movie this season, is a woman centric film based on the true story of a Punjabi woman named Kiranjit Ahluwalia who moves to England and marries a man who subjects her to violent physical abuse. Unable to bear the brutality and repeated rapes by her alcoholic husband, the battered housewife and a mother of two sets him on fire and kills him in a fury of desperation. Charged with first-degree murder, she is sentenced to life imprisonment.
Kiranjit’s plight was brought to the notice of the British Media by the untiring efforts of some women activists of Southall Black Sisters. Her story has succeeded in transforming the British judicial system and the meaning of “provocation” has since been redefined in the case of physically abused women. The story has been so influential that a book was published on her life called “Circle of Light”, by Rahila Gupta.
Provoked is directed by Jag Mundhra and casts Aishwarya Rai (Bride and Prejudice, Devdas, Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam) in the lead role. Talking about the film and Kiranjit Ahluwalia, Aishwarya shared “Her predicament connects with me in ways I never felt before”.
The film has a star studded line up of famous actors like Miranda Richardson (The Hours, Phantom of the Opera, Get Carter), Robbie Coltrane (Harry Potter, Ocean’s 12, Golden Eye, The World is Not Enough), Nandita Das (Sandstorm, Fire, Earth), Rebecca Pidgeon (Heist), Deborah Moore (Die Another Day) and Naveen Andrews (Lost, The English Patient, Bride & Prejudic)
Provoked received an excellent response when it was screened at this year’s Cannes Film Festival and more recently to Patricia Hewitt, British Culture Minister.
Eros will be announcing the release of the film shortly.