A timely tip-off from a retired police officer averted what could have possibly been a murderous attack on Kamal Haasan. Apparently, this benefactor, an old Kamal Haasan fan, advised the actor not to travel alone under any circumstance, as his life was in danger.
Haasan was warned on Wednesday when the verdict on the screening of his banned film Vishwaroopam was awaited in Tamil Nadu.
Confirming this, Kamal said: "Yes, I was warned. I wouldn't want to name the kind gentleman since his life would also be jeopardized. But yes, I was told not to travel alone."
Nevertheless, the actor says he isn't afraid to die.
"Death is what my opponents desire for me anyway. Creative death. Besides, yesterday (Jan 30) would have been a good day for me to be killed. My Bapuji (Mahatma Gandhi) was killed on this day," said Kamal, who had directed Hey Ram, a film on Mahatma Gandhi's assassin Nathuram Godse in the year 2000.
He says he would anyway die if he is barred from making movies freely.
"I don't understand politics. I am not a politician. I am a filmmaker and an actor. If I am not allowed to make the movies that I want to, I will die. It is as simple as that," he said.
That is why, he says, "I spoke yesterday (Jan 30) at the press conference in Chennai about leaving the country and working in exile. Why should my fans feel shocked at my departure? Subhash Chandra Bose did it, didn't he? He moved out of the country in the latter part of his life, and still remained a true Indian patriot. The same goes for me."
"No matter where I go, I will remain a Tamilian and an Indian. No one can take away my national identity," he added.
On a less grim note, the advance booking queues for Kamal's Hindi-Tamil-Telugu tri-lingual Vishwaroop in Hindi and Vishwaroopam in Tamil and Telugu, have multiplied manifold in the last few days after all the controversies surrounding the film erupted.
Chuckles the actor, "Maybe this would be my Pakeezah," referring to Meena Kumari's epic swan-song which swung into super-success when the actress passed away two days after the film's release.