Amid heavy security and breathless TV coverage the opening of the controversy-stricken movie passed with little drama.

There was anger about a rumored romance between a Hindu queen and a Muslim invader. There were death threats. There were buses burned and grandstanding politicians.

But when the Indian film Padmaavat was finally released on Thursday amid heavy security and breathless TV coverage, Bollywood’s latest over-the-top offering turned out to be just that: an opulent period drama with multiple songs and dances and a thin storyline and not the slightest hint of the rumored relationship.

At a theater in the Indian capital, dozens of policemen and even a few armed paramilitary troops were posted outside. There were no posters announcing the release and less than a 100 people watched the film in a theater meant for a thousand viewers.

The film is based on the 16th-century epic Sufi poem, Padmavat, in which a brave and beautiful Rajput queen chose to immolate herself in a ceremonial fire rather than be captured by the Muslim sultan of Delhi, Allaudin Khilji.

Over centuries of retelling, the epic has come to be seen as history, despite little evidence. The main character of Queen Padmini has become an object of veneration for many Rajputs, the clans of former warriors and kings from the western state of Rajasthan.

And that is where the film’s many woes originated.

Rumors, denied multiple times by the film’s producer and director Sanjay Leela Bhansali, swirled that the film depicted a romantic dream sequence between the invading sultan and the queen of legendary beauty he madly coveted. As it happens, Queen Padmini and Khilji, the sultan, never interact in the film and are in the same frame for just a few seconds.

The film’s sets were vandalized several times by Rajput groups over the last year and Bhansali was manhandled by a mob. Members of several small Rajput groups continued to be enraged about the film despite Bhansali’s protestations.