Egypt bans gay film from festival

Censors of the Cairo International Film Festival have banned a gay themed film from being screened in this year's festival 

Egypt bans gay film from festival
06 September 2012

The censorship committee of the 35th Cairo International Film Festival has rejected three of the 60 films it has reviewed so far, one of them dealt with a gay theme.

Of the two other films were censored, one dealt with the theme of adultery, while the other had scenes of sex and nudity.

The titles or directors of the films were not disclosed in the report published yesterday (5 September) by Al-Ahram.

During previous festivals, the censorship committee accepted films containing nudity and sex but restricted viewing to critics and journalists.

The 35th Cairo International Film Festival is one of the most important cinematic events in the Arab world and is set to take place in late November this year.

Homosexuality is technically not illegal in Egypt but other charges have been consistently used, usually to do with public order and morals, to imprison and harass the Egyptian LGBT community. Explicit gay issues in Egyptian media are routinely censored.

So far, in post-revolutionary Egypt, despite the ruling Muslim Brotherhood’s embrace of democracy, there has been no indication that the state would ease persecution of the country’s LGBT community, let alone related legislative reform.

Speaking with Gay Star News, Ali, a 23-year-old law student from Cairo said: ‘I could not find enough information yet on the films censored and why.

‘I do find it worrying that there seems to be a change of procedure in the film festival, I hope this doesn’t have to do with the new government – if it does it may signal a turn for the worse.’

Mohamed Abdelkhalek, a 28 year-old student from Egypt and an occasional contributor to GSN commented on the news: ‘To be honest, I am not surprised. Unfortunately, it is to be expected that there will be a lot of censorship regarding any sexual themes in the media. The current government is religious and does not include politicians with liberal mindsets.

‘To add to that, the new human rights council includes many religious people from the Muslim brotherhood and Salafist parties.

‘Even though, as an Egyptian, I am happy with some of the decisions made by the new government, such as improvement to the economy and some of the external affairs, I can see a huge problem for liberal people.

‘In regards to homosexuality, I can see no hope under the current government or any kind of improvement. Quite the opposite, I fear that they may legislate against, and continue to persecute LGBT people (like during the Mubarak years).’



No thumbnail available

Hilary Swank: It's 'astonishing' how much bigotry remains since Boys Don't Cry

'Let people love people and let's focus on what truly needs looked at and help homeless people, homeless pets, sick people'
No thumbnail available

Adele’s bisexual lover dumped her for gay friend

New biography reveals Grammy award-winning singer's heartbreak that inspired debut album 19
No thumbnail available
No thumbnail available

Hackers take over Uganda government websites due to anti-gay policy

Hackers from the Anonymous hacker group now control the website of the office of the prime minister of Uganda and the database of the Uganda Justice Law and Order Sector in retaliation for anti-gay policies
No thumbnail available

Campaigners protest Pope for gay marriage insult

Gay rights advocates were barred from holding a peaceful protest against the Pope's 'gay marriage is against human nature' comments in St Peter's Square
No thumbnail available

Family refuses to tip waitress, former marine due to her ‘gay lifestyle’

‘I am THOROUGHLY offended, mad, pissed off and hurt that THIS is what her kids will grow up learning and that I served in the Marines to keep ignorant people like them free'
No thumbnail available

The conversion of Michael Glatze from gay activist to anti-gay preacher

Justin Kelly, the director of I Am Michael movie that stars James Franco and Zachary Quinto, argues anti-gay activist Michael Glatze should not be vilified
No thumbnail available

Argentina authorizes the marriage of gay and lesbian foreigners

Two gay couples from Australia and Paraguay have already married under the new resolution
No thumbnail available

Egg bank launches as parenting show targets gay moms and dads

London Egg Bank hopes volunteer donors will come forward to solve UK shortage
No thumbnail available