Sushant Divgikr: “A cis man should not play a transgender on screen”

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Sushant Divgikr is a proud transgender celebrity who has never shoed away from being vocal about transgender representation in movies.

Divgikr is more popularly known as Rani KoHenur and is a mainstream drag queen of B-Town.  As per Sushant, while cinema and the audience watching it have evolved a lot over the years especially with movies like ‘Badhaai Do’ breaking ground and finding success in the mainstream, there is a lot more to achieve in that space.

Divgikr recently received a lot of applause and praise for his show at a Mumbai club. As reported by TOI, Divgikr has clear opinion on representation of transgenders in movies. He said, “I know that times have changed in last few years and people have been more accepting. Now it’s time we look at developing the space all the more. It is important that there is more awareness and misrepresentations can be avoided in cinema.”

He further explains, “Can you imagine a leading Bollywood hero playing PT Usha (track and field athlete) on screen? Then how could we imagine a cis man playing the role of a transgender on screen? Now you know the difference? A cis man should not play a transgender on screen. Casting directors should research and give opportunities to transgender to pull off these characters. If they don’t know where to find transgenders, then they better come to me, I will introduce them to so many of them. If you can’t find them, that means you haven’t looked enough.”

When asked if as a transgender he sees himself taking up an interesting and challenging role, he says, “Of course! I see myself as a triple threat… who looks fantastic, sings and dances well and acts well too? I have been active since the last 16 years. I hope people are looking at me for such roles. My hard work and talent took me places. I have represented my community and my country at international level. I am sure Indian showbiz took notice of me. If people here don’t know about me then I am sure they are living under a rock. And, if the entertainment industry is purposely ignoring people like me, then it shows their lack of acceptance and attempt at evolving.” Divgikr also added that Indian audience deserve to see authentic casting. He adds, “It is okay if you ignore us, but don’t misrepresent us in the name of making money at the box office. There needs to be some authenticity maintained, right? After all we are in the era where fabulous scripts are being written and shows are being made for OTT. There is scope today, then why not make use of it?”

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