Why did you decide to make a film about a man coming out as gay?
I didn’t want to make an ‘outspoken’ film. I thought, if this is normal, why can’t everything in the film be normal? A simple ghar ghar ki kahani. So I decided to focus on how people come out—the pressures they feel. I had to find a unique way to show that; I chose cooking.
Where did the image of the mermen come from?
I wanted to portray some kind of explicit sexuality between two men. It was important not to shy away from it. You have to help your audience grow. But frontal nudity would have been too much, so I thought of the mermen.
How did you put the film together?
Through Ketto.org I raised around Rs 2.5 lakh, but it wasn’t enough.
Abhishek Verma, the artist behind Maacher Jhol
The project stalled for a while, but then I decided to leave my job and focus on the film. I brought in a friend who was an experienced line producer, and he took charge of the process. I did 7,000 to 8,000 drawings overall for the film—but that was because I wasn’t happy with it and redrew about half.