Chinese filmmaker Fan Popo said his government is ‘homophobic’ during an appearance at Kashish, Mumbai International Queer Film Festival in India this week.
‘The Chinese government is homophobic, and they do not let queer films be screened in theaters,’ said Fan, Hindustan Times reports.
‘We have to screen films in small cafes, and even then police often stop screenings. LGBT groups are all underground.’
Fan has made at least seven films about the LGBT community in China. His latest Mama Rainbow about parents who are supporting their own and other children to live openly gay lives is being shown at Kashish along with five other films about China.
‘Each year Kashish honors one country in our Country Focus package to appreciate and acknowledge efforts made by other countries producing qualitative queer cinema,’ said Sridhar Rangayan, festival director.
‘I was invited as a guest to the Beijing Queer Film Festival in 2011 and I saw how the festival was held against insurmountable odds. But the passion and excitement by the community attending the festival was palpable and encouraging.’
Fan spoke about how the police closed down Beijing Queer Film Festival that year and just last week police interrupted two IDAHO events and arrested an 18-year-old gay rights activist in Changsha, Hunan province.