En Magan Magizhvan (My Son is Gay), touted to be the first Tamil film on gay relationships, has won the Best Film Award at the Second Indian World Film Festival-2018 (IWFF-18) that was held in Hyderabad recently.
Directed and produced by Lokesh Rajavel, the film made its international premiere at the Indian Film Festival of Melbourne in August 2017. It was also screened at the NewFest: The NYC LGBT Film Festival in New York.
My Son is Gay received a 'U/A' certificate without any cuts from the CBFC in November last year, following which it premiered in India on November 25, 2017 at the Calcutta International LGBT Film and Video Festival.
The cast includes well-known actors like Anupama Kumar, Jayaprakash, Kishore Kumar, Sriranjani, Abhishek Joseph, and debutant Ashwinjith.
As the title suggests, the film is about a young man coming out to his mother about his sexual orientation. Actor Anupama Kumar has played the mother and Ashwinjith, the son. The film is set to release in theatres soon.
My Son is Gay was initially supposed to be made in Hindi through crowdfunding. However, the effort did not work out and Lokesh Kumar made the film in Tamil.
There have been very few Tamil films which have had gay characters and their portrayal has mostly been derogatory.
Indian films which dealt with gay relationships have also run into trouble in the past. Aligarh, which released in 2016, was based on the life of an Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) professor who was suspended from his job because of his sexual orientation. The film ran into trouble with a fringe group called the Millat Bedari Muhim Committee (MBMC) that asked for it to be banned.
The 2016 Jayan Cherian's Malayalam film Ka Bodyscapes finally received an ‘A’ certificate from the CBFC after a long drawn battle. The film tells the story of a painter named Haris, Vishnu, his lover and rural kabaddi player, and their friend Sia, a woman from a conservative Muslim family in Kerala who questions patriarchal norms.