Twitter – filmdom's latest battleground

New Delhi : You’d think a social networking site would be for just that, socialising and networking. But Twitter seems to have also become a battleground for some Bollywood celebrities who are using it to settle scores.

In the last month, four major online spats among celebrities have broken out – between filmmakers Ram Gopal Varma and Karan Johar, filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt and Javed Akhtar-Shabana Azmi; film critic Rajeev Masand and Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan were at loggerheads too and Shobha De’s online barbs infuriated Sonam Kapoor and Punit Malhotra.

Varma hasn’t missed a chance to take a dig at Karan with whom he shares a “love and hate relationship” since he joined Twitter. A recent swipe was over Karan’s “My Name Is Khan” and “Kurbaan”.

“I want to remake ‘Raavan’ and I want to request Mani to remake ‘(Ram Gopal Varma Ki) Aag’,” Varma posted as a reaction to Mani Ratnam’s recently released “Raavan” on his Twitter page. It was followed by another post: “I (have) got a better idea… I will make ‘My name is Raavan’ and Mani should make ‘Raavan Ki Kurbaan’.”

An angry Johar replied: “You have an amazing sense of humour Ramu (Varma)! Never shows up in your films though.”

Varma’s quick rejoinder was: “Karan, because of the constant bashing I receive, I developed my sense of humour as a defence mechanism. And talking of my films not having humour, check out the great comedy I made called ‘RGV Ki Aag’.”

Varma even made fun of Karan’s latest production venture “I Hate Luv Storys”.

“I hate ‘I Hate Luv Storys’ for being a big hit and I love ‘I Hate Luv Storys’ because its K. Jos’s (Karan Johar’s) film, who I love to hate and hate to love and that’s our love-hate story,” Varma posted on his Twitter page.

However, Karan seems to have taken the message lightly, as he tweeted back: “Superb tweet Ramu!!! You couldn’t have worded our ‘story’ better!!”

Directed by debutant Punit Malhotra “I Hate Luv Storys” instigated other arguments too. Well-known author and columnist Shobhaa De when labelled the movie dumb and wrote on Twitter that Punit ought to be “spanked in public” for making such a film.

She further said, “As for Sonam, the lassie lacks oomph,” and “Imran should keep his shirt on… if he doesn’t want the audience to lose theirs.”

Sonam refused to ignore De’s comment and tweeted, “Guys please don’t take Shobha De seriously. She’s a fossil who’s getting no action and going through menopause.”

This was, however, deleted within minutes.

Filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt and lyricist Javed Akhtar and his actress wife Shabana Azmi have crossed swords over profit-sharing in Hindi films on Twitter.

And the latest on the list is film critic Rajeev Masand who called Bollywood star Akshay Kumar a “jackass” after his much hyped visit to ailing cartoonist R.K. Laxman at the Breach Candy Hospital in Mumbai.

Masand posted on his Twitter page: “Need innovative ideas to promote films in competitive times. But Akshay Kumar grinning like a jackass at R.K. Laxman’s hospital bed is a new low.”

But Masand calling Akshay a “jackass” didn’t go well with Amitabh.

“Rajeev…your fraternity will never pull you up for calling Akshay a ‘jackass’. Ever thought if the reverse were to be done…would your fraternity have spared Akshay if he were to address you as one? Never expected this language from you,” Bachchan posted on Twitter.

Big B’s post led to a war of words between the superstar and the film critic.

Masand typed out a “humble reply” to Amitabh.

“Dear Sir, Let’s consider – ‘if my fraternity won’t pull me up for that ‘jackass’ comment, could it possibly be because they see some sense in my comment? Or could it be because that’s what fraternity does: Stands by each other? You should know, Sir.

“I don’t remember your fraternity pulling you up for the attack on photographers by security outside your house during Abhishek’s wedding. I don’t remember your fraternity so much as expressing outrage when Abhishek ‘allegedly’ bashed up a photographer on a film set. But your concern sir, is the use of the term ‘jackass’.”

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