Jude Boman Tony in a still from Kaala.
Jude Boman Tony in a still from Kaala.

Delhi filmmaker Tarun Jain's short film on racism, Kaala, explores racism beyond black and white

The filmmaker shares the journey of writing and making the film, and how it transformed his own outlook towards racial discrimination.
PUBLISHED ON JAN 15, 2021 05:10 PM IST

Filmmaker Tarun Jain recently made headlines when his short film, Kaala, got into the race for Oscars after winning the Best Narrative Short Drama award at Cinequest Film & VR Festival in San Jose, USA. Talking to Hindustan Times, the filmmaker shares the journey of writing and making the film, and how it also transformed his own outlook towards racial discrimination.

"I have never been at the receiving end of discrimination. I have lived my life in Delhi and growing up, I never realised the caste-based discrimination ingrained in our society. After the racial attacks on African nationals in Delhi, I decided to explore the subject and decided to spend time with college students in the city. I researched for six months, looking closely at how 'outsiders' are treated here. Not just foreign nationals, but even those from our own country," he said.

Elaborating on how people from North East are often discriminated against, Tarun said, "Slowly, I woke up to the sub-conscious level of discrimination. Our growing years play an important part in how we behave. We grow up watching our elders behave in a certain manner with people from so called lower caste. The factor of untouchability is never taught to people but ingrained with our own surroundings."

Talking about his cast, Tarun said he auditioned many people before he found Jude Boman Tony who plays the protagonist. "Jude brought his own angle to the narrative. He had his own, real life experiences of the subject, from his stay in Delhi. I rewrote several parts of the film after meeting him." 


Tarun also added that he wanted to expand the subject, which is why an Indian, dark-skinned character is also there in the film. The short film, which showcases one incident of violent, unprovoked attack on Jude's character by a group of students, features this dark-skinned character in the group itself. And, he is often discriminated against. At one point, he is even asked to compare his skin with that of the African national they have attacked. "It is not about Indian attacking foreign nationals. It is the same everywhere. We feel bad when it happens to an Indian abroad, but we do not shy away from attacking 'others' in our own space either. Based on caste, religion, or even skin colour, we discriminate against fellow human beings," Tarun said.

He also shared a personal experience when he was scared. "I was in the US for a film festival and it got really late at night when I was walking back from the venue, all alone, in a dark street. Suddenly, a group of young men came and threatened me. Thankfully nothing unpleasant happened. But the whole idea that they believed they could threaten me and corner me, was scary. And this happened in an area which has many people of Indian origin!"

Interact with the author @swetakaushal

Follow @htshowbiz for more

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON

Related Stories

Ankita Lokhande flew kites on Makar Sankranti.
Ankita Lokhande flew kites on Makar Sankranti.

Ankita Lokhande remembers Sushant Singh Rajput's Manjha while flying kites

UPDATED ON JAN 15, 2021 02:19 PM IST
Ankita Lokhande has shared a Makar Sakranti video, which has Sushant Singh Rajput's song Manjha from Kai Po Che playing in the background.
Amitabh Bachchan has appeared in three Sarkar movies.
Amitabh Bachchan has appeared in three Sarkar movies.

Amitabh Bachchan won't be seen in another Sarkar movie, says Ram Gopal Varma

PUBLISHED ON JAN 15, 2021 02:09 PM IST
  • Ram Gopal Varma has said that he has no intention of making a Sarkar 4, although he is planning another project for Amitabh Bachchan.
Close
Actor Bindiya Goswami and filmmaker JP Dutta with their daughter Nidhi Dutta and son-in-law Binoy Gandhi
Actor Bindiya Goswami and filmmaker JP Dutta with their daughter Nidhi Dutta and son-in-law Binoy Gandhi

Nidhi Dutta: I will count myself lucky if Binoy and I can be half as happy as my parents are

UPDATED ON MAR 07, 2021 10:18 PM IST
The actor talks about her dream wedding, the importance of relationship and what she hopes she got from her parents
Close
You have to keep hammering the thought of equality and keep putting it out there constantly, Bhumi says.
You have to keep hammering the thought of equality and keep putting it out there constantly, Bhumi says.

Bhumi Pednekar: Women are a far cry from being equal to men

UPDATED ON MAR 07, 2021 10:11 PM IST
On International Women’s Day (March 8), Bhumi Pednekar stresses upon the fact that “being a woman in today’s world, comes with a lot of responsibility”
Close
Kangana Ranaut with Vikas Bahl.
Kangana Ranaut with Vikas Bahl.

Kangana thanks Vikas for his role in her career despite their personal equation

UPDATED ON MAR 07, 2021 09:38 PM IST
  • Kangana Ranaut, who earlier accused Vikas Bahl of inappropriate behaviour, thanked him for turning her career around with Queen. She said that he 'played a very significant role' in shaping her destiny.
Close
Shahid Kapoor and Mira Rajput took the Centre of Gravity challenge.
Shahid Kapoor and Mira Rajput took the Centre of Gravity challenge.

Shahid Kapoor nails Centre of Gravity challenge with Mira Rajput, watch video

UPDATED ON MAR 07, 2021 08:32 PM IST
  • Shahid Kapoor aced the Centre of Gravity challenge, much to the surprise of his wife Mira Rajput, who called him a 'smooth operator'. Watch the video here.
Close
Aaliya Siddiqui had filed for divorce from her husband Nawazuddin Siddiqui last year.
Aaliya Siddiqui had filed for divorce from her husband Nawazuddin Siddiqui last year.

Nawazuddin Siddiqui's wife Aaliya ready to resolve issues with Shamas Siddiqui

PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 07:07 PM IST
  • Nawazuddin Siddiqui's wife Aaliya has reaffirmed her wish to reconcile with the actor in a new interview, adding that she is ready to mend her ties with his brother Shamas.
Close
Vicky Kaushal at the Indian Army camp in Uri.
Vicky Kaushal at the Indian Army camp in Uri.

Vicky visits Indian Army base camp in Uri, shares photos from his 'lovely day'

PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 06:26 PM IST
Vicky Kaushal thanked the Indian Army for inviting him to their base camp in Uri to spend the day. He took to Instagram to share pictures from his visit.
Close
Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma at a birthday party.
Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma at a birthday party.

Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma let their hair down at a party

PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 05:51 PM IST
A candid picture of Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma celebrating the first birthday of Wriddhiman Saha's son Anvay in Ahmedabad was shared online. See it here.
Close
Rhea Kapoor has been dating Karan Boolani for several years now.
Rhea Kapoor has been dating Karan Boolani for several years now.

Rhea Kapoor showers boyfriend Karan Boolani with kisses in cute photos

PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 05:29 PM IST
  • Rhea Kapoor dedicated an adorable Instagram post to her boyfriend Karan Boolani. She shared pictures of her showering him with kisses. See his reply here.
Close
Taimur Ali Khan recently turned older brother.
Taimur Ali Khan recently turned older brother.

'Cowboy' Taimur steps out with dad Saif Ali Khan and half-sister Sara Ali Khan

PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 05:05 PM IST
  • Taimur Ali Khan was photographed in Mumbai on Sunday. The star kid was seen out with his father Saif Ali Khan and half-sister Sara Ali Khan.
Close
Ibrahim Ali Khan turned 20 on March 5.
Ibrahim Ali Khan turned 20 on March 5.

Inside Ibramin Ali Khan's birthday bash with Saif, Sara calls them 'carbon copy'

PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 04:47 PM IST
  • Sara Ali Khan shared two new pictures from brother Ibrahim's birthday party. More pictures were shared by one of Ibrahim's friends.
Close
Anupam Kher turned 66 on Sunday.
Anupam Kher turned 66 on Sunday.

Inside Anupam’s birthday ‘pawri’: Watch actor dancing with his 'best friends'

PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 04:12 PM IST
  • Anupam Kher, who turned a year older on Sunday, shared a video from his birthday 'pawri' with his 'best friends'. Watch it here.
Close
Vidya Balan in a still from The Dirty Picture.(HT Photo)
Vidya Balan in a still from The Dirty Picture.(HT Photo)

Vidya recalls parents' first reaction to Dirty Picture: 'Dad clapped, mom cried'

UPDATED ON MAR 07, 2021 03:51 PM IST
  • Actor Vidya Balan has recalled feeling worried about how her family would react to The Dirty Picture. She revealed her mother and father's immediate reaction to the film.
Close
Twinkle Khanna's public service annoucement featured an adorable photo of daughter Nitara.
Twinkle Khanna's public service annoucement featured an adorable photo of daughter Nitara.

Twinkle uses cute pic of Nitara to give important message about Covid-19 safety

PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 03:25 PM IST
  • Twinkle Khanna, using an adorable photo of daughter Nitara kissing a puppy, urged everyone to wear their masks correctly instead of using them as 'chin straps'.
Close
It was a working birthday for Janhvi Kapoor.
It was a working birthday for Janhvi Kapoor.

Janhvi celebrates birthday on Good Luck Jerry sets, gets cake smeared on face

PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 02:53 PM IST
  • Janhvi Kapoor celebrated her 24th birthday on Saturday, with the team of Good Luck Jerry. See inside pictures and videos from the celebrations here.
Close
Alia Bhatt shared a new photo on her Instagram.
Alia Bhatt shared a new photo on her Instagram.

Alia Bhatt leaves Katrina Kaif lovestruck with her 'fruity' photo

PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 02:47 PM IST
  • Alia Bhatt is ready for summer and her latest Instagram post is a proof of it. Alia was seen soaking up the sun, leaving Katrina Kaif impressed.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP