Kaala, a film by Indian superstar Rajinikanth is not being screened in the southern state of Karnataka, amid threats from regional groups.
Protesters are furious because they feel the star is against Karnataka, which is in a water dispute with Tamil Nadu, where Rajinikanth lives.
The star has a massive fan following in both states. Not screening the film in Karnataka would mean huge losses.
Protesters are reportedly stopping people from buying tickets.
The delay in screening the film comes despite three different courts refusing to stall its release, which had been "banned" by a local film association board last week.
A senior police official told BBC Hindi's Imran Qureshi that it seemed that cinema officials had decided not to screen the film. "We have provided security as per the order, but cinema owners haven't yet begun screening the movie."
The two states are locked in a battle over the resources of the Cauvery river, which originates in Karnataka and flows through Tamil Nadu. The disagreement goes back more than a century, with both states arguing that they need the water for millions of farmers.
Most recently, India's top court ordered Karnataka to release more water to Tamil Nadu, adding that it would face "serious consequences" if it failed to do so.
The actor, who has also announced an entry into politics in Tamil Nadu, got into controversy when he said that Karnataka should ensure the order is implemented.
Rajinikanth himself had publicly requested the chief minister of Karnataka to release the film.
"I request you to allow those who want to see the film and allow your corporation to release the movie. This is a humble request from me," he said, addressing a crowd.
But HD Kumaraswamy told reporters on Wednesday evening that he would prefer the movie release to be delayed. "We will follow the high court order but we also need to take the sentiments of people into account," he said.