I traveled to India recently to present the film at the 4th annual Kashish: Mumbai International Queer Film Festival. I had a wonderful time meeting LGBT people in India who are struggling to find their place in society. I also participated in the Filmmaker in Focus program, a conversation with a live audience to discuss my inspiration and acclaim as a filmmaker. Audiences responded positively to the message of activism in United in Anger. They also appreciated the portrayal of the LGBT community ‘s strength — to be themselves in the face of so much discrimination took incredible resilience.
Here’s an excerpt from the interview with K Bhardwaj for the Indian newspaper Pioneer:
K: How do you look at queer cinema worldwide?
Jim: I want to see films that come out of particular communities, so that Indian queer films look different from South African queer films or Italian queer films. It is especially important that they do not mimic U.S. queer films. Hollywood is a terrible influence around the world, promoting a culture of cartoon-like violence and bad relationships between people.
K: Why is it that popular actors keep away from queer cinema?
Jim: Because they don’t want to be perceived as queer. This is very strange because queerness and theater have always been connected. In Western culture, this is true. In Kabuki (form of Japanese theater), also, so I assume in other cultures as well. The problem is that there is stigma attached to being queer. I think it’s wonderful to be queer. I wouldn’t want to be straight. I think being normal is boring. We should all celebrate our magical queerness and not worry what anyone else thinks.
[ 0 comments ]