Writer-director Ramin Bahrani may have earned a nomination for the ‘Best Adapted Screenplay’ category at the upcoming Oscars as well as the recent BAFTAs, but The White Tiger director recently faced a verbal racist attack on the streets of Atlanta during his Q&A session. Ramin was doing an interview with producer Ava Duvernay when a man passed a racist comment at him telling him to ‘go back to his country.’ For the uninitiated, the filmmaker was born and brought up in North Carolina.
“I was in Atlanta on location in a residential neighbourhood directing a TV pilot for Apple. We had worked late that day, so I had to do my Zoom interview with Ava on my phone while we were still in the street. During the interview, I noticed a car parked behind me. When the driver saw me and my colleague (who is South Asian) he said, ‘You all think you run the world. You all don’t run s—.’ His friend told him to calm down and leave it alone. As the driver pulled away, he shouted, ‘Go back to your own country!'” Ramin Bahrani recalled the racist attack to People magazine in an interview. Ava had told Ramin to address this issue instead of brushing it under the carpet.
Priyanka Chopra, who plays a supporting tole in The White Tiger and is also an executive producer of the film, has come out in support of Ramin. In her befitting response to the racial attack, Priyanka said, “Asking me about my thoughts on what happened to Ramin is a sign of where we stand today, and the work we have to continue to do. So my question in response is – who belongs here, and who doesn’t? Isn’t America a melting pot of all people from all backgrounds? This country was built on the back of immigrants in search of the American dream, a life of freedom, opportunity, and a safe place not only for themselves but for their families.”
Based on Aravind Adiga’s Man Booker Prize-winning novel, The White Tiger has received wide acclaim. Starring Adarsh Gourav, Priyanka Chopra and Rajkumaar Rao, the film is also executive-produced by Priyanka. The film’s Iranian-American writer-director Rami Bahrani has been nominated at the upcoming Oscars in the Best Adapted Screenplay category.