Many Found First Period Bizarre & Unreal Which It Is, But That's the Point of the Story: Director Mozez Singh
Director Mozez Singh has taken upon himself to keep the discussion around cultural neglect of menstrual hygiene going as he has come up with a short film called First Period which highlights the multi-pronged issues that are related to period sanitation needs.
Image: A YouTube grab
Akshay Kumar’s Pad Man successfully sparked a conversation around menstruation, a topic still taboo in various parts of India. The film, directed by R Balki and produced by Twinkle Khanna, garnered much appreciation for its unconventional subject as well as impeccable performances by the cast.
Now, director Mozez Singh has taken upon himself to keep the discussion around cultural neglect of menstrual hygiene going as he has come up with a short film called First Period which highlights the multi-pronged issues that are related to period sanitation needs.
In First Period, Mozez puts men in women’s shoes and tells a story from a man’s point of view.
“I felt that until men were not involved in conversation around menstrual hygiene it could not be a universal conversation, so I got my writer on board Ishani Banerjee who previously wrote ‘Aligarh’ and we started tossing different ideas and we came up with this one which we thought was very surreal, extreme and also very hard-hitting in its own way,” Mozez told News18.com about how he thought of flipping the tables.
Imagining a world where men menstruate instead of women is a bit too much to believe, but Mozez says that is what the whole point of his story because its unusual concept will get more people involved in the conversation.
“A lot of people have found the story unreal which it is but that’s the point of the story and others have found it bizarre which it is that’s also the point of the story. I think at the end of the day every filmmaker wants there to be a dialogue or a discussion about their work and the films they make and I think if this film is provocative then it’s a good thing for the cause because more and more people are going to talk about it and that’s really the point of the film,” he says.
Twinkle Khanna, an active advocate of menstrual hygiene, has come forward to back the project.
“She launched the film for us a couple of days ago. She was the first person that I sent the film once it was ready. She was instantly supportive. She thought it was an extremely emphatic take on the whole thing,” says the director, who debuted in the Hindi cinema with Vicky Kaushal starrer Zubaan in 2016.
He adds, “I think people like Balki, Akshay and Twinkle have been hugely responsible in making the conversation about menstruation very normal. Although I think they pushed the envelope as much as they can, still a lot of work needs to be done as it’s not a normal conversation for everybody. But, it’s come a long way and thanks to all these people.”
When asked if he’s planning to take the project to any film festivals, Mozez says, “For right now, we just want the film to reach out to as many people as possible. Yes, we’re thinking about taking it to a few short film festivals and to more interactive platforms. But, the point of the film is for Indians to see it because this is an Indian problem. For Indians to see and for Indians to be sensitized to the problem and for as many people as possible in this country to see it so that they know that this problem is a real issue.”
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