All eyes are on the lovely Sonam Kapoor as she graces the screen this Friday in debutante director Shelly Chopra Dhar’s Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga as a beautiful happy-go-lucky highly eligible girl from a conservative family who has a deep dark secret.
She is in love with someone of her own gender. This is the first time a mainstream actress is playing a lesbian character. Shabana Azmi who played a lesbian in Deepa Mehta’s Fire thinks it’s a healthy time for gender exploration. “And Sonam, who’s like my own daughter, has constantly sought out roles that challenge the status quo.”
Adds filmmaker Onir, “I think it’s wonderful that’s someone like Sonam who comes from Mainstream cinema space is doing a lesbian character. Sonam has always been forthright in supporting the LGBTQ movement. Hope male actors from mainstream are inspired by her. I am looking forward to seeing the film.”
Interestingly Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga is written by a trans-woman Gazal Dhaliwal who has based the plot on her own experiences.
Gay editor-writer-director Apurva Asrani is miffed that Ghazal’s contribution to the film is not being satisfactorily highlighted in the publicity and marketing. Says Apurva, “One will have to wait and watch. Right now I have seen a heterosexual shaadi song to promote the film and a campaign where men are talking about their lady loves with the hashtag Ek Ladki Ko dekha toh. None of the marketing is skewed in the direction of the LGBTQ community. In fact they haven’t even talked about the fact that the writer of the film Ghazal is a trans-woman. So let’s see if Sonam is actually playing a lesbian woman.”