British LGBTQIA+ film festival presents exclusive one-night screening at AUT

March 20, 2024

British LGBTQIA+ film festival presents exclusive one-night screening at AUT

AUT Rainbow Inclusion Manager looks forward to seeing how LGBTQIA+ is represented in tonight’s screening of the Five Films of Freedom. Photo: Charlize Russell

The British Council and BFI Flare have partnered up to share LGBTQIA+ stories globally via a small selection of short films until March 24, including a free screening at AUT for one night only.

The festival was launched to celebrate the stories of strength and spirit of members of LGBTQIA+ worldwide.

Consisting of 5 different films each year, the 2024 films are each based on the topic of love, to express the message that love is an essential human right.

Director of the film ‘Halfway’ presented in this year's festival, Kumar Chheda says love is a boundless theme in the film.

“It’s really something that can take place anywhere with anyone…you see two people in love with no other lens but love.”

Running annually since 2015, the Five Films for Freedom has received over 23 million views from over 200 countries.

The event attracts a range of viewers. From the UK’s houses of parliament to parts of the world where homosexuality is criminalized, sometimes by death penalty.

Exploring themes homophobia, police brutality to self-discovery, each of these eye-opening short films educate viewers on the LGBTQIA+, the importance on understanding their stories, and standing up against prejudice, censorship, and hate.

Jessie Lewthwaite, Inclusion Manager of AUT Rainbow, praises the Five Films of Freedom.

“I think that visibility is a really important part of advocacy for the community, being able to see ourselves on screens that straight or cis [gender] people get to see all the time having characters to relate to, seeing our stories told is really, really important.”

People everywhere are encouraged to watch and share the films from 13-24 March in solidarity with LGBTIQIA+ communities in places where freedom and equal rights are limited.

A screening at AUT city campus will be held from 5pm tonight in WG308.

To view the Five Films of Freedom online, head to https://film.britishcouncil.org/about/work/fivefilmsforfreedom

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