Source: HT News Service
Published on: June 27, 2023


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Zoya Akhtar addresses criticism of the portrayal of characters in her adaptation of Archie Comics, set in 1964, questioning their perceived lack of Indian appearance.

Filmmaker Zoya Akhtar has responded to the flak that her upcoming directorial, The Archies, has been getting ever since the first glimpse was released. The flak has only gotten multiplied since a teaser of the film was dropped at the Netflix global fan event TUDUM in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

When the first glimpse of the Indian adaptation of Archie Comics was dropped, fans criticised it widely, claiming that the world and the characters don’t look Indian. Especially since the story is set in a hill station of 1964 India, people claimed that’s ‘not how Indians looked’ back then.

Zoya’s statement

“Why do you think that? They’re all Indian. This is kind of reverse (racism). Are you saying fair Indians are not Indians? How do we define what an Indian looks like? It could be Hrithik Roshan, it could be Mr. Rajinikanth, it could be Diljit Dosanjh, it could be Mary Kom. That’s the beauty of India. There are a lot of Indians that are light-skinned,” said Zoya in an interview to Mid-Day at TUDUM.

Her statement on The Archies setting

The Archies is the Indian adaptation of the popular Archie Comics. It’s set in the Anglo-Indian community at a fictional hill station in India called Riverdale back in 1964. On setting the storyline in that period, Zoya said in an interview to Film Companion, “When I was asked to adapt this, I didn’t want to do a modern take. Firstly, Riverdale has done it. Secondly, it’s not my experience of Archies. My experience of Archies is a simpler time, a more innocent time, a gentler time, where less is more. I wanted to go back to that. I wanted to keep the essence of the comic and find a way for it to resonate with young adults today.”

More about The Archies

The ensemble stars a number of debutants, including Shah Rukh Khan and Gauri Khan’s daughter Suhana Khan, late Sridevi and producer Boney Kapoor’s younger daughter Khushi Kapoor and Amitabh Bachchan and Jaya Bachchan’s grandson Agastya Nanda.

The Archies has been adapted by Zoya and co-writers Reema Kagti and Ayesha DeVitre. It’s produced by Zoya and Reema’s Tiger Baby Films and will premiere on Netflix India on November 24.

Disclaimer: Except the headline and synopsis, this story has been taken from the HT News Service