Transwoman writes, directs film; seeks to script new role for community

In the interview, Priya Babu spoke about the need for the movie, the research involved in the movie, the possible release, the crew, the support she got for the movie and her future endeavours.
Priya Babu
Priya Babu

CHENNAI: Priya Babu, India’s first transwoman director and producer, in an exclusive interview to DT Next spoke about the first ever transperson historical movie to be made in India.

The movie named ‘Arigandi’ documents the history of the bravery of transpersons 350 years back.

In the interview, Priya Babu spoke about the need for the movie, the research involved in the movie, the possible release, the crew, the support she got for the movie and her future endeavours.

What was the need for taking a historical movie on transpersons?

• Transpersons are continuously portrayed in a bad light in Indian movies and the same is reflected in the society. The refusal to portray transpersons in good light forced me to make a movie on transpersons and ‘Arigandi’ is one such movie, which will highlight the social status enjoyed by the transpersons in the society and how they were revered in the society.

Where did you find the story of ‘Arigandi’? How much research was involved in the movie?

• The reference about ‘Arigandi’ is found in the book ‘Muppidathi’ by Kaniyan Selvaraj. Only two things were taken from the book and the rest were from the research carried out by me. It took one year for me to research about ‘Arigandi, a valorous transperson who lived 350 years ago and successfully defended her chieftain in Virudhunagar district.

.When is the movie set to release? Will it be in theatre or on OTT platforms?

• Since the movie is only for 38 minutes, we cannot go for a theatrical release. We are in talks with an OTT service provider and the talks are nearing completion. After the post-production works, the final deal will be confirmed and we are planning to launch the movie in the first week of January.

How about funding and support for the movie?

•The total cost of the movie comes around Rs 10 lakh. I managed to arrange 80 per cent of the fund for the movie, partially with my own resources and with the help of my friends. A transperson named Solu, first transperson physiotherapist, is the lead in the movie and other artists in the movie are regular artists of Tamil cinema. Since it is a movie for a cause, all the artists accepted to work with meager salary.

What’s next?

• I am planning to take a full-length feature movie again on the history of transpersons. Next time it will be a grand movie, which will capture the history of a transpersons who had wielded great influence in Tamil Nadu. I have managed to gather records for the movie and will commence the movie after the release of ‘Arigandi’.

Visit news.dtnext.in to explore our interactive epaper!

Download the DT Next app for more exciting features!

Click here for iOS

Click here for Android

Related Stories

No stories found.
DT next
www.dtnext.in