Chennai holds film festival for LGBT community

30 films, Indian and international, celebrating the LGBT community will be screened at the Chennai Rainbow Film Festival

The Chennai Rainbow Film Festival (CRFF) 2013 is an LGBT film festival running from 7 to 9 June 2013 in India.

It will be the first in the Tamil Nadu’s capital city, with more than 30 short films and documentaries, Indian and international, will be screened over three days. Entry is free and open to all.

The film festival is a community initiative showcasing the works of established and emerging LGBT film and video makers, or others portraying the LGBT community in a positive light.

Rupesh Reddy from the Chennai Dost, an LGBT community organization, told Gay Star News the film festival was needed as the country had a conservative mindset with a long way to go towards acceptance of LGBT people and their rights.

Reddy said, ‘We think the CRFF is a wonderful opportunity to connect the audience and the filmmakers on LGBT issues’.

He said the CRFF was needed to provide a platform for filmmakers producing films with LGBT themes to showcase their work and reach a mainstream audience, and to bring these films to a wider audience who would otherwise not get to see these films.

The aim is to bring these films, which would otherwise struggle to get onto cinema screens, to a mainstream audience.

The festival will screen and promote films showing LGBT lives and loves in a positive light.

The festival will also include:

– Awards Ceremony for the best LGBT shorts and documentaries.

– Awards Ceremony for media, film and art personalities who have supported and/or contributed to the LGBT community and its issues

– Panel discussion on the media portrayal of LGBT issues

– LGBT-themed photography and art exhibition with an award for the best photograph or artwork with an LGBT theme

Reddy said he hoped the films would challenge the prejudice of the general public and the media towards LGBT people and change hearts and minds.

Organized by Chennai Dost and Alliance Francaise of Madras, Chennai Dost is one of the major support groups for LGBT people with approximately 3000 members. They are one of the main organizations behind Chennai Rainbow Pride.

Alliance Francaise of Madras is a fusion of French and Indian culture, and is a school that teaches French culture and French language and plays an active part in the artistic life of Chennai.

While conservative on gay rights, India is becoming more progressive. The country decriminalized homosexuality in 2009.

by Rakshita Patel
Source – Gay Star News