18 July 2024
Man smoking and a transwoman dancing in Sari, Unicorns

Interview – Unicorns directors Sally El Hosaini and James Krishna Floyd and actors Ben Hardy and Jason Patel

It was a project so close to the hearts of co-directors Sally El Hosaini and James Krishna Floyd that developing Unicorns was like “a child growing up in the house”. Some eight years since the film was simply an idea, it arrives in UK cinemas this week after making an impression on BFI Flare audiences a few months ago.

Loosely based on the experiences of  Asifa Lahore, Britain’s first out Muslim drag queen, the story focuses on single dad Luke (Ben Hardy), who meets a flirtatious dancer, Aysha (Jason Patel), when he accidentally stumbles on a nightclub playing Asian dance music. When they share a passionate kiss, it’s immediately apparent that Aysha isn’t the person Luke had assumed but the fascination remains and the two gradually grow closer. They soon realise that Aysha’s life away from the nighttime glitz and glamour could overshadow, and even destroy, their relationship.

In our exclusive interviews below, Hardy and Patel talk about how their co-directors’ passion for the story influenced their performances, as well as their instant chemistry together on screen. El Hosaini and Krishna Floyd describe where the idea for the film came from, how its roots were firmly in reality and how they both came to care about the characters they created.

Sally El Hosaini and James Krishna Floyd

Ben Hardy and Jason Patel.

Watch Official UK Trailer

Unicorns is released in cinemas on 5th July 2024. / Read our review of the film

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