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'Films on the LGBTQ+ community are often serious or preachy': 'Hum Bhi Akele Tum Bhi Akele' director Harish Vyas

Harish Vyas gets candid about how he came up with the concept, working with the two actors, dealing with criticism and more.

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Oshin Fernandes | Updated on: Saturday, June 05, 2021, 01:04 PM IST

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Hum Bhi Akele Tum Bhi Akele starring Zareen Khan and Anshuman Jha is the latest film that celebrates the LGBTQ+ community onscreen.

The film’s director Harish Vyas gets candid about how he came up with the concept, working with the two actors, dealing with criticism and more.

Harish says that the concept emerged in his ideation process after making a queer documentary titled My friend Sue, which added fuel to his desire to tell a similar story on a bigger platform.

He says, “I had a counsellor in an NGO, to whom I asked if a gay and a lesbian could fall in love, she denied because they aren't physically compatible. But I always thought that love could also be beyond physical compatibility, the one with souls. So, that's where the idea came from.”

“Films on LGBTQ+ community are often serious/preachy. I wanted Hum Bhi Akele Tum Bhi Akele to come off as a light hearted and breezy and at the same time representing their feelings and emotions,” he adds.

Elaborating on the research he did for the film, Vyas says, “While writing, me and my co-writer Susan did our research and talked to the people from the LGBTQ+ community because script demands honesty towards the subject.”

Speaking about his experience working with Zareen and Anshuman, Harish says, “The most challenging part was to have a mismatched pair, so that the film looks natural. Anshuman is method actor, he believes in preparations and he did some workshops and the result is in front of you. Zareen is a natural, and I know I need to take the best out of her. While shooting some serious and emotional scenes, we did a lot of reading. I believe in reading. Overall, it was a good experience.”

For those unversed, this is Anshuman’s second collaboration with Harish. The duo has previously worked in the 2018 film Angrezi Mein Kehte Hain.

While most of the reviews for Hum Bhi Akele Tum Bhi Akele weren’t positive, Harish shares how he deals with criticism.

He says, “I have always respected critics but only if they are genuine. Problem arises when they become personal and irrational. Filmmaking is a mixture of all kinds of art hence everyone has their own opinion but using indecent language isn’t appreciated.”

When asked if he anticipated the film’s success or failure given its release on OTT, Vyas concludes by stating, “Yes! At the end of the day for producers it’s definitely about the money. For me it is important to get noticed through your work/film because you work hard, but thankfully due to OTT and other platforms we have something to offer.”

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Published on: Saturday, June 05, 2021, 01:04 PM IST