South Asia's biggest LGBTQ film fest will screen 147 films from 45 countries Acclaimed Indian gay road drama LOEV will be the closing film at the 8th KASHISH Mumbai International Queer Film Festival. South Asia's biggest LGBTQ film festival will be held between May 24-28, 2017, at two venues in South Mumbai - the city's iconic art deco theatre Liberty Cinema and Alliance Francaise. LOEV, directed by Sudhanshu Saria and starring Shiv Pandit, late Dhruv Ganesh and Siddharth Menon will be screened on the closing day at Liberty Cinema on May 28, 2017. Delegate registrations for the five-day festival are currently open on Book My Show. “This film is a gentle sensitive romantic film that stays close to the love triangle and doesn’t stray into typical Indian family melodrama or coming out angst. Shot and edited beautifully it is a very evocative film that touches your heart and makes you smile, laugh, cry and fall in love with the characters," said Festival Director Sridhar Rangayan. LOEV, which had its world premiere at Estonia's Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival also won the Audience Award for Best Feature Film at the Tel Aviv International Film Festival. "Love is always just love and it comes in so many packages and we look forward to sharing our version of it with the audiences in Mumbai attending KASHISH this year," Sudanshu Saria, director of the film. Actor Shiv Pandit who plays one of the leads in the film and is more known for commercial Bollywood films, said LOEV offered him a chance to challenge his craft. "You get into acting to break down barriers and dismantle preconceived notions but I don't know if a role I've performed ever did that for me the way this character did. It's just made me sensitive to the struggles of the LGBTQ community in a much more intimate way," said Shiv Pandit. His co-star Siddharth Menon agreed. "We've honestly just made a love story and tried to honour the dignity of their love. There is a KASHISH between them that we've tried to capture and we hope the audience will enjoy it!" said Siddharth Menon. Arfi Lamba, one of the co producers said that it was an honour to screen at KASHISH 2017. "It's an absolute joy to be the closing night film at the festival that has done so much to further the understanding of and conversations around LGBTQ issues. We couldn't have designed a better end for LOEV's festival journey than this!" said Arfi Lamba. KASHISH 2017 opens on May 24, 2017 with the American film Signature Move, directed by Jennifer Reed and starring Shabana Azmi. “We are delighted to be opening the film festival with a desi film ‘Signature Move’ and closing the festival with an Indian film ‘LOVE’. Both are marvelous in the way they handle romance, the first between two women who are racially diverse, and the other between three men who are diametrically opposite. The maturity of handling the subject matter in both the films is remarkable, truly heralding the coming-of-age of South Asian LGBTQ cinema," added Rangayan. KASHISH Mumbai International Queer Film Festival Founded in 2010, KASHISH MIQFF is held over 5 days at two venues. The festival this year will be held at Liberty Cinema and Alliance Francaise in South Mumbai. It is the first Indian LGBT festival to be held with approval by the Information & Broadcasting Ministry, Government of India. Voted as one of the Top 5 LGBT Film Festival in the world, KASHISH Mumbai International Queer Film Festival is South Asia's biggest queer film festival and the only LGBT film festival in India to be held in a mainstream theater. The film festival this year will be held between May 24-May 28, 2017, at two venues in South Mumbai – the city’s iconic art deco theatre Liberty Cinema and Alliance Francaise. Delegate Registrations are open on Book My Show https://in.bookmyshow.com/festival/mumbai-international-queer-film-festival THEME of KASHISH 2017 : ‘Diverse, One’ The theme of KASHISH 2017 explores the diversity of the LGBTQ communities. The diverse shades of the rainbow remind us that as people we are all different and we are all unique. In the fight for an equal society, basic human rights and against laws that criminalize and discriminate, it is our shared values that bring us together. We are strongest when we come together, when we embrace one another’s uniqueness and celebrate our differences. We are Diverse, We are One.