CBFC clears gay film ‘Evening Shadows’ with U/A certificate
Award winning director Sridhar Rangayan’s feature film Evening Shadows has received a U/A certificate from the censor board in Mumbai, marking a very progressive shift in the certification process.
“Myself and my team are so thrilled with this. It opens new doors for us. It offers the film a chance to reach out to a larger mainstream audience through a theatrical release and a satellite release. Our main aim when we made the film was not only to reach out to the LGBTQ community, but also mainly to parents and families in small towns. This U/A certification is a boon for the film”, said Sridhar Rangayan, director of the film.
The makers said, the film centers around a young gay man coming out to his mother living in a small town in Southern India, and is not just a story of him coming out, but also about a woman’s struggle to fight a patriarchal society and come out herself as a woman.
They said that the censor board members who viewed the film felt it was very sensitively made and depicted the dilemmas of the mother with empathy. They also mentioned that the film doesn’t stereotype the gay characters.
Ananth Mahadevan, one of the lead actor of the film said, “The film has been treated with the right amount of restraint and sensibility by Sridhar Rangayan. Am glad the censors acknowledged that and agreed on the need for a wider audience to watch this film. A great deal of maturity displayed by both sides concerned.”
“I am delighted that we have managed a U/A certificate. Many people felt that homosexuality as the principal subject of a mainstream feature film would never get past the censors. This is proof that no matter what the theme of a film may be, if the content is presented with grace and good taste and if the story-telling is top-notch, nothing can stop a film from reaching its audiences. I believe it is a major victory for a small film that has been crowd-funded and carries the hopes and dreams of many people. I want to say, ‘Thank you Universe’. That’s all. ", said actress Mona Ambegaonkar who plays the mother in the film.
“It’s a very positive sign and a very progressive step by CBFC. Hope the film will be well received and will be instrumental in garnering more acceptance for LGBT children in our society”, said Saagar Gupta, producer of the film who has also written
The news of the certification has gone viral and is attracting a lot of positive acclaim, with the LGBTQ community in India and worldwide rejoicing at this very progressive decision, hailing it a big victory for Indian LGBTQ movement.
Produced by Solaris Pictures, whose earlier film Breaking Free won the National Award, the film Evening Shadows stars Mona Ambegaonkar, Ananth Mahadevan, Devansh Doshi and Arpit Chaudhary in the lead. The film has been crowdfunded with support from more than 180 contributors worldwide.
The film will have its World Premiere on February 25th at Mardi Gras Film Festival and its European Premiere at Roze Filmdagen film festival in Amsterdam on March 10th. The Indian release of the film is being awaited with much anticipation.
Trailer of the film can be viewed at https://youtu.be/iDpqasfWF9k