South Asian representation in film and television has always been a problem. How we culturally perceive ourselves in the world we live in is vastly represented in how the media portray us. And while we are thankful for those South Asians who are IT whizzes, corner shop managers, and taxi drivers who get us safely from A to B, the stereotypical on-screen character types have always unfortunately lent themselves to mockery under the western gaze.
It’s important to remember that South Asians have more complex lives than what the world around us believes. We have stories to tell, experiences we’ve lived, and battles we’ve overcome – and Hollywood is finally taking note by giving us the film and TV representation we deserve. Gone is Apu from The Simpsons‘ Apu, and in comes Kamala Khan from Ms Marvel, the hugely popular recent Disney+ show written by women of Pakistani descent, who understand more than anyone how to write for a woman of colour.
Thankfully, we have also seen an onslaught of game-changing South Asian film and television shows, from Mindy Kaling’s Never Have I Ever to the Priyanka Chopra Jonas starring, The White Tiger. As South Asian Heritage Month (SAHM) celebrates its third year, there is no better opportunity for GLAMOUR to compile a list of the best film and tv series with actors, producers, directors and writers of South Asian descent.