CBC and Telefilm Canada will offer the debut of“Deepa Mehta”’s new film "Funny Boy" on CBC TV and the free CBC Gem streaming service Friday, 4th December at 8p.m. The film will premiere on Netflix outside of Canada on Thursday, 10th December. CBC Films, Telefilm Canada and Ontario Creates collectively contributed to the film. Based on a novel by Shyam Selvadurai the film is co-written by Mehta and Selvadurai, produced by David Hamilton and Hussain Amarshi; and stars Brandon Ingram in his feature film debut, Nimmi Harasgama, Ali Kazmi, Agam Darshi, and Arush Nand as “young Arjie.”
Mehta’s work has been sold and distributed on a global scale, and at all prevalnet film festivals. Her films include "Elemental Trilogy: Earth, Fire, and Water,” “Heaven on Earth," and “Bollywood/Hollywood," which received an Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Language Film. Mehta recently shot the pilot and second episode for the Netflix Original series, "Leila," and serves as the creative executive producer for the show. She also directed “The Manager,” the pilot episode of “Little America” for AppleTV.
CBC stated that its films are centered around female, LGBTQ2+, Indigenous and diverse filmmakers. The company pledges to push out new Canadian film added to the CBC Gem streaming library each week to increase its audiences in the region. The novel “Funny Boy,” published by McClelland & Stewart, won multiple awards including WH Smith Books/Books in Canada First Novel Award, and the Lambda Award for Best Gay Men’s Fiction (1997), and was shortlisted for the Giller Prize in 1994 and named a 1996 American Library Association Notable Book.
Shot on location and set in Sri Lanka in the 1970s and 80s, "Funny Boy" explores the awakening of sexual identity by a young boy named Arjie. The film showcases Arjie’s struggle to find balance and self-love despite the absence of empathy and understanding. "In many ways, 'Funny Boy' reflects the times of divisiveness we are living in today, where the call for a just society, a call for humanity is what we are all striving for," Mehta said.
In many ways, 'Funny Boy' reflects the times of divisiveness we are living in today, where the call for a just society, a call for humanity is what we are all striving for.” Deepa Mehta Film Director, "Funny Boy"