By Subhash K Jha
MUMBAI: Last week the co-producers of Dedh Ishqiya Shemaroo hosted a screening of Dedh Ishqiya for the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bi-sexual trans-gender) community at the PVR Juhu.
A first for any mainstream commercial Hindi film.
Earlier Onir’s I Am and Viacom 18’s Bombay Talkies which also dealt with homosexuality, never got around to screening the films specifically and exclusively for gay-transgender communities.
The response to Madhuri Dixit and Huma Qureshi’s alluded lesbianism in Dedh Ishqiya was overwhelming during the LGBT screening of the film. Now one hears the producers want to further tap the non-mainstream alternate-sex market by screening the film in different cities and then abroad for the gay community.
Says Ketan Maroo of Shemaroo, “We are quite overwhelmed by the response to the film from every community. We are happy the LGBT community has embraced the film .Dedh Ishqiya has also been loved by female audiences which is proven by the fact the Wednesday and Thursday afternoon shows have been flocked by women’s groups Wednesday and Thursday afternoons are generally when kitty parties are held.Audiences have been in splits during the movie and have gone out and spread the good word. And this is proven by the growth and sustained performance of the film at the multiplexes.”
The film has also been extremely well-received in Pakistan and the UAE where the the theme of forbidden same-sex love from behind the purdah , inspired by Ismat Chugtai’s short story The Quilt, has evoked tremendous curiosity.