There are so many great ways to describe Ranveer Singh: effervescent, hilarious, talented, bindaas. The actor is known for breaking barriers with everything he does. In his next film, Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s magnum opus “Padmavati,” Singh is rumored to be playing the bisexual character of Alauddin Khilji. Let me tell you, we are all for it.
We finally got our first look at “Padmavati,” releasing on Dec. 1. It has been the most-awaited film of the year and for good reason.
— Deepika Padukone (@deepikapadukone) September 21, 2017
It has a star-studded cast: Singh will be seen opposite his off-screen girlfriend Deepika Padukone, Shahid Kapoor, and Aditi Rao Hydari. The period drama is loosely based on the life of Rani Padmini. Padukone plays the titular role of the heroine, a beautiful princess who ruled Mewar with her husband Rana Rawal Ratan Singh (Kapoor). Khilji decided to invade their territory with the desire to capture Padmini.
Now, Khilji had several wives, one of whom will be played by Hydari. However, he was also known to romance men, specifically Malik Kafur, his trusted slave general. Jim Sarbh (“Neerja”) will essay this role.
We’ve seen Bollywood do its version of LGBTQ representation. Movies such as “Margarita with a Straw,” “Aligarh,” and “Fire” were ground breaking in their ability to navigate uncharted territory on the big screen void of homophobic jokes and stock characters that large-scale comedies typically employ. Bisexual representation has been sorely missing, especially from the lead protagonist.
On the big screen, the closest we’ve come is in 2014’s “Dedh Ishqiya.” Madhuri Dixit’s comeback movie saw her playing a Begum and conning Naseerudin Shah’s character into falling for her, while she was in a sordid but loving relationship with her maid Muniya (Huma Qureshi). For many South Asians, playing a bisexual character is still taboo. Archie Punjabi played a fierce bisexual lady Kalinda Sharma on the American show “The Good Wife.” And that was that.
For a while now, the audience has been wondering if Bhansali will correctly portray Khilji on film and looks like it’s happening. Plus, it’s absolutely amazing that Singh is the one who’s opening up the gates for his fellow actors and actresses to widen their area and be open to roles that are diverse, unique, and accepting.
Here’s why Singh is actually perfect to be playing this role.
1. His gender-neutral and fantastic fashion sense
Look no further than Singh if you want some fashion inspiration. Always in the headlines for unique, gender fluid clothing choices, he’s leaving his mark in all the right places. Of course, this doesn’t mean all those who are bisexual should or do dress this way. It means Singh is obviously someone who is open to the idea of not being confined by societal norms.
2. The dude has chemistry with every co-star
If you thought his smokin’ hot chemistry with Padukone in “Ram-Leela” was everything, you ain’t seen nothing yet. Obviously they look excellent together.
This applies to all his female co-stars including Anushka Sharma and Vaani Kapoor but have you even seen him with his other true love: Arjun Kapoor? In his short time in the industry, he’s mastered the art of looking good with everyone he shares space with.
3. He doesn’t take himself too seriously
Alright, let me explain. Singh is obviously a really easy-going person who doesn’t let anyone influence his personality. So, of course, he’d be more open to playing a historical character that can potentially change history (ha!).
Kudos to Singh, Bhansali, Sarbh, and everyone who thought it necessary to bring this sexual diversity on-screen. Let’s welcome it with open arms and hope that this venture doesn’t become an excuse for several people to start yet another protest.