Huma Qureshi on her Cannes 2019 sartorial choices: Safe and regular is not my thing
Huma Qureshi on principles that are determining her fashion choices at the Cannes Film Festival 2019
Her sartorial choices playing second fiddle, Huma Qureshi slayed the Cannes Film Festival with an impassioned speech on the place of women in cinema. Part of the Madhur Bhandarkar-hosted Women in Global Cinema discussion at the India Pavillion on Saturday, Qureshi joined the likes of American actor Judi Beecher and Australian filmmaker Saara Lamberg in highlighting the concern behind 'women-centric' films.
Qureshi tells mid-day that by attaching the label with cinema, people are essentially detaching "films about women from the concept of regular films." She says, "With this segregation, we are removing women-oriented films from mainstream cinema. It almost sounds like women require special attention, when, in an ideal scenario, a story's requirement should be independent of its protagonist's gender. Cinema mirrors society's thought process, and the way we are thinking, is changing. In India, women show-runners are making great movies, and roles for female actors are no longer limited to those that showcase them as damsels in distress. We are rescuing ourselves."
No newbie to the festival at the French Riviera, Qureshi has certainly upped her fashion game this year. "There is pressure [to look good]. The process involves a collaboration involving the stylist and designer. This year, I'm working with Ayesha Nigam, who is pushing me to do something different. For me, it's about finding something that reflects my personality, but is comfortable."
Her black Balmain blazer dress, and a red Nauman Piyarji selection has earned particular attention. Referring to Balmain as one among her favourite brands, she says, "I bought this dress during an overseas trip. Ayesha agreed that is was an apt choice for me. New York-based Nauman custom-made the red piece and sent it in three days."
Blame it on the fact that she doesn't fit the stereotype of a lithe Bollywood diva, or her de-glam roles in cinema, but Qureshi has generously attracted the wrath of the industry's self appointed troll police. "You can't please everyone, so if you feel happy, everything else is irrelevant. I am going with edgy and classic looks. I swing between the two extremes. It adds dimension. 'Safe and regular' is not my thing, be it in films, or fashion."
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Diana Penty and Huma Qureshi leave for Cannes in style