Recent anti-gay propaganda laws in Russian have made LGBT life dangerous. This documentary looks at modern gay life in my home country.
I am currently finishing a feature length documentary "Campaign of Hate: Russia and Gay Propaganda" about gay life in modern Russia. Since growing up as a confused gay child in the former Soviet Union, it has been my dream to show the world a vision of what it is like to be a member of the LGBT community in my former homeland.
As most of the world moves forward toward gay equality, Russia is seemingly heading backward. Antigay sentiment and legislation are spreading rapidly throughout the country. Earlier this year, the Russian parliament passed a ban on so-called “gay propaganda” that effectively makes nearly any public discussion of gay equality a crime. The city of Moscow has outlawed Gay Pride parades for the next 100 years. Adoption of Russian children is forbidden to citizens of any foreign country that permits gay marriage. And legislation is now being considered that would permit the Russian government to remove gay people’s children from their homes. The Kremlin has chosen the LGBT community as its scapegoat in a populist campaign against supposedly decadent “Western” values, and there are ominous signs of much worse to come. Violent attacks against Russian gays or suspected gays are more and more common. Videos of young LGBT people being taunted and tortured have been widely distributed on the Internet.
Those are the stories that get the headlines, but there is much more to the Russian LGBT men and woman I have met. It is my hope that this documentary will educate viewers to their reality.
Several months ago, I traveled to Russia with a documentary film crew and interviewed a wide range of locals about the realities of LGBT people there: people on the street, activists, teachers, journalists and diplomats, as well as many ordinary gays and lesbians. Through their testimonies, we offer a rich and moving portrait of the Russia's LGBT movement and where it may be headed.
We are now working on completing this documentary, but we need your assistance to make that possible. Anything you could donate toward paying the editing and postproduction costs of our film would be greatly appreciated.
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With most of the filming in Russia and New York finished, we are up against the challenge of a constantly changing story. There are new "anti gay" laws being proposed and many other issues being brought up due to the upcoming Sochi Olympic games. To accommodate any last minute changes we have budgeted and scheduled two additional shooting days to update interviews and have worked them into the edit schedule.
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