Writer Varun Grover, who along with Smita Singh and Vasant Nath has written the super hit web series Sacred Games (produced by Phantom Films), starring Saif Ali Khan, Radhika Apte and Nawazuddin Siddiqui, among others, has been accused of sexual harassment by an anonymous victim when he was her senior at Benares Hindu University. While Grover, a strong supporter of the #MeToo movement in India, has categorically denied the allegations, there’s buzz that Netflix which has a tough policy on sexual harassment may drop the sequel of Sacred Games altogether. This year they implemented a new sexual harassment policy for their staff too.
Varun Grover had posted on Twitter, “I completely, totally, categorically deny all the allegations being made. The screenshot in question is untrue, misleading, and defamatory to say the least. Issuing a detailed statement soon. Here's my detailed statement about the completely fabricated, misleading, and defamatory allegations against me. Am absolutely willing to cooperate and clear my name. Let's not allow such agenda-driven tactics to derail this movement please.”
But the repercussions to the allegation, has apparently already started as buzz is Grover’s name may either be dropped from the credits or the SG sequel may be dropped completely. A trade source tells us, “The #MeToo movement is going the Hollywood way. After the news that Reliance is apparently considering dropping Vikas Bahl’s (one of the partners of Phantom,) name from the credits in Super 30, which he is directing, now comes another piece of news. In the light of the recent allegations against one of the writers of Sacred Games, Varun Grover, Netflix is considering some options on how to tackle the situation. They may drop the successful web series completely (which turned around Saif’s career once more) or drop the name of writer.”
A reliable source from Netflix without wishing to be named says, "At this time we are evaluating options on the path forward.”
The television thriller series Sacred Games is based on Vikram Chandra's 2006 novel and is directed by Vikramaditya Motwane and Anurag Kashyap. Motwane and Kashyap have co-directed the series. The story revolves around a troubled police inspector, Sartaj Singh, (Saif Ali Khan) in Mumbai police who receives an anonymous phone call from Ganesh Gaitonde (Nawazuddin), a notorious crime lord and the chain of events that follows soon after, with Singh getting to know India's underworld on a deeper level. In the process, he is helped by Research and Analysis Wing officer, Anjali Mathur (Radhika Apte).