"This could be a global embarrassment."
The teaser for Bawaal has been released, however, the ending has led some viewers to wonder if the makers are romanticising the Holocaust.
Starring Varun Dhawan and Janhvi Kapoor, the teaser hints at a tragic love story.
Varun plays Ajay Dixit, a teacher in Lucknow, idolised by his students and admired by the locals.
Janhvi is Nisha, a bright girl whose only hope is to find her one true love.
The teaser introduces love brewing between the two stars and the pair dancing. But it is implied that problems in their relationship start to arise as text reads:
“Every love story has its own war.”
In the teaser, Janhvi is heard saying:
“I took so much time in understanding our relationship that when I actually understood it, it was time to lose it.”
There appears to be growing tension between the couple as the music builds up.
It then features Nisha sitting in a car and Ajay standing outside, indicating that she is leaving him.
But in an unexpected twist, a black-and-white shot appears to show Janhvi and Varun inside a gas chamber in a concentration camp.
Surrounded by Jews gasping for air, the pair desperately try to make their way to each other, implying that they are desperately battling through the challenges to reignite their relationship.
The tiny window is then closed by a Nazi soldier.
The teaser ends with the announcement that Bawaal will be available on Amazon Prime Video from July 21, 2023.
It left many viewers confused and outraged as the teaser implied that the problems in Ajay and Nisha’s relationship are on the same level as the Holocaust, which saw six million Jews murdered.
One shocked viewer said: “Wtf gas chamber? Nazi Germany?”
Another asked: “Was that a gas chamber in the final shot of the teaser?”
Some viewers believed the last shot romanticised the Holocaust.
One wrote: “Surely the makers of Bawaal haven’t equated a problematic aspect of their relationship with Nazi gas chambers where Jews were exterminated.
“This could be a global embarrassment.”
Slamming director Nitesh Tiwari, another said:
“Nitesh Tiwari is f*****g insane. You don’t use a tragedy on the scale of the Holocaust to portray basic romantic strife and then show a gas chamber scene.
“All my expectations for this film went out of the window.”
Manish Menghani, director of content licensing at Prime Video, India, said:
“An unconventional love story in the form of Bawaal goes beyond the confines of borders, languages, or a period in time.”
“A powerhouse collaboration between the critically acclaimed combination of Nitesh and Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari with the much-celebrated filmmaker Sajid Nadiadwala, along with Varun Dhawan and Janhvi Kapoor as the lead pair is assured to give the audience a romantic tale they’d never forget.”
Sajid Nadiadwala said: “I am so proud of Bawaal, a film that I believe will forever be one of my most special and memorable projects.
“From the beginning, we believed that Bawaal would be truly appreciated and thoroughly enjoyed by audiences all over the world, and partnering with Prime Video enables us to reach every corner, through a global streaming premiere.
“Working with a visionary like Nitesh, and talented actors like Varun and Janhvi, makes the job of a producer that much easier, as we’ve managed to supersede our own ambitions for the film.”