Karan Johar is a name in the industry that everyone wants to work with and be in the good books of. Koffee with Karan, the talk show he hosts speaks uninhibitedly of the same. He is known for the glamor and perfection in his movies and of course the immensely rich characters and families. But out of all the things that he is known for, the one that receives most attraction is his interest in homosexuality.
LGBT has been spoken about on social media in recent years but they have been a part of Karan Johar’s movies long before that. He certainly deserves the credit for bringing the subject to the mainstream cinema. It all started with Kal Ho Na Ho.
Kal Ho Na Ho (2003)
This movie is still close to many hearts because of SRK’s character Aman. But the way Kantaben would shiver (with a hilarious background score) whenever her Rohit Baba would hint her of being gay makes us ROFL till date. It didn’t only give the hint that homosexuality exists to Kanta Ben’s character but to the audience as well and it was just the beginning.
Dostana was the first mainstream commercial movie that showed homosexuality as the theme of the story. Yes, it was stereotyped and everything was given a comic angle but showing Kirron Kher accepting her son dating another man was a step forward towards acceptance. That’s progressive, right?
Student of The Year (2012)
Student of the Year was another movie that had a typical rom-com plot. But if there was anything atypical it was the principal of the school played by Rishi Kapoor. His character was gay and would swoon over the sports teacher of the school, played by Ronit Roy. Rishi Kapoor’s character was a middle-aged man, which suggested that it is not a thing about this generation, homosexuality is natural and has been there for a very long time now.
Ajeeb Dastan Hai Yeh (2013)
The tribute to hundred years of Bollywood – Bombay Talkies had to have a Karan Johar segment. The film was about an openly gay guy who found out that his boss’ husband is gay but is in the closet. The film shows how societal pressure forces you to become someone else. One changes oneself to be acceptable by society and how it affects you and the people around you.
Kapoor & Sons (2016)
Kapoor & Sons didn’t only show homosexuality but it also showed how hard it is to open up regarding it to your own loved ones. The reason is also explained well through the reaction of his mother. She accepts the truth with time. The difference in generations towards acceptance is also shown in the movie.
Somewhere when we were laughing, Karan Johar made a very smart move towards introducing us to homosexuality and making it a part of mainstream Bollywood. With more mainstream movies like Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga and Shubh Mangal Zyada Savdhan, we are seeing a small, albeit positive change with respect to portraying LGBTQ+ characters in Bollywood.