Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga: 9 real-life LGBTQ stars who made a mark in the Entertainment Industry

With just a day left for the release of Ek Ladki Ko Dekha To Aisa Laga, Bollywood’s first commercial film with big stars based on the subject of same sex love story, we bring down 9 LGBTQ artists who are working with great dignity and respect in the Entertainment Industry.

While Ek Ladki Ko… is no doubt the first Bollywood mainstream film highlighting the subject of LGBTQ which is definitely a welcome change, let us tell you that Entertainment Industry has welcomed and appreciated LGBTQ people for their work and talent from a long time.

To start with recent reality show Sa Re Ga Ma Pa had Gay model Sushant Divgikar as a contestant based on his great singing skills, something which has never happened before. Similarly we have Anjali Ameer India’s First Trans Movie Heroine Starring in a Film with Superstar Mammootty.

Below are the list of successful LGBTQ artist who with their sheer dedication and talent opened creative doors for the LGBTQ community

Gazal Dahiwal

Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga: 9 real-life LGBTQ stars who made a mark in the Entertainment Industry

A lot of people don’t know that Gazal who is the scriptwriter of Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga is actually a transgender. Till the age of 25 Gazal was a man after which she went for a sex change operation. From the age of 5 Gazal got a hint that she was a women trapped in a man’s body.

Sushant Divgikar

Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga: 9 real-life LGBTQ stars who made a mark in the Entertainment Industry

Sushant Divgikar, former Mr Gay India and LGBTQIA flag-bearer, was seen as a participant on the music reality show, ‘Sa Re Ga Ma Pa’. It was the first time that a mainstream Indian reality show had LGBTQ as their contestant

Anjali Ameer

Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga: 9 real-life LGBTQ stars who made a mark in the Entertainment Industry

Anjali Ameer is India’s First Transgender who has worked in a mainstream commercial film opposite Mammootty in Peranbu. In fact it was Mammootty who suggested Anjali’s name to the makers of the film.

Gauri Sawant

Pic Courtesy: Ketto
Pic Courtesy: Ketto

Gauri Sawant (a eunuch), born as Ganesh, decided not to change to match her sex, but to change to match her identity. In the year 2017, Gauri featured in the Vicks ad which narrates the heart touching a story of how a trans-woman and activist, came to adopt a young girl whose birth mother died of AIDS.

Onir

Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga: 9 real-life LGBTQ stars who made a mark in the Entertainment Industry

Director of  My Brother…Nikhil and Shab, Onir has admitted of being gay. Onir says he was in relationships in the past where he was open but his significant other was not comfortable maybe because the person had the fear of being assumed as gay just because he was with the filmmaker. “I have been in relationships where I was open but my significant other was not comfortable – maybe it was the fear of being seen with me and being assumed that they are also gay,” he said. Onir is a Recipient of National award which he won for I Am, a 2011 Indian anthology film based on real-life stories.

Apurva Asrani

Apurva Asrani with his partner Siddhant
Apurva Asrani with his partner Siddhant

Four days after Supreme Court decriminalized homosexuality, Apurva Asrani, the screen-writer of films such as Aligarh, Shahid and Simran, took to Facebook to make public his 11-year-old relationship with his partner Siddhant.

Manish Arora

Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga: 9 real-life LGBTQ stars who made a mark in the Entertainment Industry

Arora is a well known Indian designer on the International fashion scene, and was also the fashion director of Paco Rabanne. At Lakme Fashion Week, 2003 , in one of his interviews Manish said, “Some are open about their sexual preferences, some hide it. I don’t go around announcing, ‘Hi, I’m Manish Arora, and I’m gay’. But if you asked me, I wouldn’t deny it.”

Shonali Bose

Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga: 9 real-life LGBTQ stars who made a mark in the Entertainment Industry

Shonali Bose identifies herself as bisexual. Shonali who is a National Award winner is now directing Bollywood film The Sky Is Pink which stars Priyanka Chopra, Farhan Akhtar and Zaira Wasim.

Rituparno Ghosh

Pic courtesy: The Wire
Pic courtesy: The Wire

Once paranoid about his own sexuality, late Rituparno Ghosh was one of the few openly gay figures in Indian cinema and was considered an icon of the LGBTQ community of India. A self-professed Satyajit Ray fan, Ghosh was a renowned filmmaker in Bengali cinema.

(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

Free Press Journal

www.freepressjournal.in