Films are a very powerful medium to shape narratives and raise awareness about various less discussed topics and subjects in society. Films like this have inspired people to have conversations and an awareness and understanding of gender fluidity. Here are 11 actors who have played LGBTQIA+ roles in Hindi cinema and started some much-needed conversations.
11 Bollywood Actors Who Have Portrayed LGBTQ Characters On The Big Screen
Madhuri Dixit in Maja Ma
Madhuri Dixit tried out for the role of Pallavi Patel and showed how a middle-aged woman who fulfills her duty as a housewife and mother finally comes out of the closet and owns her individual identity.
Sonam Kapoor in Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga
The Bollywood fashionista took viewers by surprise when she starred as a closet lesbian in Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga. Based on the 1919 novel, ‘A damsel in distress‘, the film featured Sweety having to choose between the one she loved, angering her family, or marrying a man, which would make her family happy.
Rajkummar Rao in Badhaai Do
Rajkummar starred as a gay cop in Badhaai Do deliver one of the key messages – you can’t run away from yourself, so it’s best to find solutions and ways to make yourself happy.
Purab Kohli and Sanjay Suri in My Brother Nikhil
Based on the true story of Domini D’Souza, an Indian AIDS activist, the film through the character of Nikhil depicts the struggles of being a gay HIV patient. Sanjay Suri stars as Nikhil Kapoor, a closeted gay man and state swimming champion who is diagnosed with HIV, after which he is abandoned by his parents and kicked out of his swim team.
Purab Kohli plays the role of Nigel (Nikhil’s boyfriend) who along with Nikhil’s sister Anamika (played by Juhi Chawla) and her boyfriend are the ones who support him in his crisis.
Ayushmann Khurrana in Shubh Mangal Zyada Savdhaan
Known for breaking stereotypes and always choosing multi-layered characters, Ayushmann Khurrana played a gay character in Shubh Mangal Zyada Savdhanand kept the film’s essence and message simple – “Love is love”.
Kalki Koechlin in Straw Daisy
Kalki playing the role of Laila, is a bisexual teenager with cerebral palsy (a movement disorder) who falls in love with a young activist named Khanum, a blind girl with an independent personality. During the film, she is confused about her sexual orientation as she is also attracted to a man named Jared.
Vaani Kapoor in Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui
In the film, Vaani plays the role of a trans woman, Maanvi Brar and showed how a woman is trapped in a male body but with the help of cognitive therapy and multiple operations she finally felt liberated.
Fawad Khan in Kapoor & Sons
The film is about a dysfunctional family where two estranged brothers return to their parents after their grandfather suffers cardiac arrest and they come face to face with the collapse of their parents’ marriage. Fawad Khan tries out for the role of Rahul Kapoor, a gay man who keeps the truth guarded until he comes out of the closet.
Randeep Hooda and Saqib Saleem in Bombay Talkies
Both actors play gay characters in the film. Randeep stars as Dev, a closeted gay married man. Saqib portrays Avinash leaving his parents’ house in distress as they are ashamed of his sexuality and mistake him for a eunuch.
Such films have not only opened up avenues of discussion, but have also helped raise awareness to make the world a more tolerant place. Celebrate love and watch these movies, if you haven’t already.
Read also : Kareena Kapoor says she will make sure to discuss the LGBTQ community with Taimur and Jeh
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