Society threw stones at me when I made a film on homosexual love: Director M B Padmakumar

Padmakumar claims there was no audience for his film, which got released in 2014.

Film director M B Padmakumar has shared the bitter experience he had to undergo when he made a film on homosexual love, even as he praised the new Malayalam movie 'Kaathal-The Core' which deals with the same theme. Padmakumar directed 'My Life Partner', which narrated the story of a gay relationship, in 2014. He revealed that not only were theatres unwilling to exhibit the film as it did not have any superstars acting in it, but many centres, where the film got released, took it down and replaced it with another film named 'Garbha Shriman.'

Although the film was finally screened at one or two multiplexes, there was no audience for it. However, 'My Life Partner' won the State award for second best film that year, while Sudev Nair bagged the best actor award. Padmakumar said that the producer of the film, who had to make many sacrifices, later sold its rights to an online channel. The channel divided it into parts and uploaded it on its YouTube channel.

In a social media post, Padmakumar expressed his happiness over people accepting Jeo Baby's 'Kaathal,' a film on same-sex romance. He also complimented Mammootty for his outstanding performance in the film.

“There is a scene in the movie 'Kaathal' where Mammootty's character washes his face while looking at the mirror. He does this not once but several times. How beautifully he has portrayed that scene! This is proof of how deeply he understood and studied the character. He has conceived and acted out the scene to reinforce the idea that the labels imposed by society on people will not change, no matter how many times they try to wash it away. Many directors and filmmakers are still struggling to bring out these stories into the mainstream but have not been as lucky as Jeo Baby. ‘My Life Partner’ narrated homosexual love differently. It was a mirror held against society. The story and the characters of the film are still alive. I wrote the script for the film after a lot of research. The mental pressure I experienced in 2014 was extreme. Society threw stones at me, accusing me of making a film that was based on homosexual love. When my children went to school, they were told in plain Malayalam that their father was a director of a sleazy movie. It hurt them very much. When my film got released, I tried to approach many superstars, asking them to watch the film and comment on it. However, many of them turned their back on me.

“When the movie was released, I went to the theatre in Lulu Mall, hoping that someone would open the door and come in to watch the film. But not many people came to see the movie,” he said. Padmakumar also said he had approached several stars with the script, requesting them to give him their dates for the film shoot. “I went to some of them stating that I am an actor who had played the villain in 'Nivedyam’. I did not come into films to become an actor or a villain. I acted in some films only to make a living,” he said. Padmakumar first acted in the film 'Aswaroodan,' which was released in 2006. He then played roles in 'Anachantham,' 'Rakshakan,' 'Nivedyam,' 'Taniye,' 'Daveed,' 'Pattanathil Sundaran,' 'Keralotsavam,' 'Kuttisrank,' '72 Model Thomson Villa,' and 'Oliporu.' He has worked as an assistant with directors Jayaraj, Shaji N Karun, Lohitadas, and others and directed a short film called 'Silent Colours.'

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