The BFI projected a message of love onto the Tower of London as part of the launch for its LGBT Flare film festival.
The projection read “Love is a human right”, a theme related to the films selected. The #FiveFilms4Freedom short film section of the Flare festival consists of films from across the world that celebrate LGTBQ+ stories.
BFI Flare is the UK’s longest running LGBTQ+ film event. It began in 1986 as Gay’s Own Pictures. By its 3rd edition it was tagged the London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival and since then has grown to become the largest LGBTQ+ film event in the UK, and its most anticipated. The Festival changed its name to BFI Flare in 2014 to reflect the increasing diversity of its films, filmmakers and audience.
The short films, from India, Canada, South Korea, Greece and the UK shine a light on the LGBTQ+ experience around the world. As well as the message of love, the projection included selected clips from the films, including a passionate kiss between an Indian woman and her housemaid which risks both family and Indian tradition; two British farmers witnessed kissing by disapproving family members and a South Korean man hiding evidence of his partner when he receives an unexpected visit from his mother. One of the short films, Landline, can be viewed below.
The British Minister For Equalities, Baroness Williams, said the Flare films were “A fantastic celebration of the artistic and cultural contributions of the international LGBTQ+ community.
These films present a chance for everyone to engage with the issues facing the community, and projecting them onto one of the capital’s most recognisable sites, the Tower of London, makes a real statement about their importance and relevance.”
With LGBT films continuing to make a splash in festivals across the globe, Flare reported that last year their short films were viewed 1.8 million times by people in 202 countries, including parts of the world where homosexuality is criminalised, and in some cases punishable by the death penalty.
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