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Short film exploring open relationships nominated for Palm Springs award

Short film exploring open relationships nominated for Palm Springs award

A short film exploring the issues around open LGBTI relationships has been nominated for a Palm Springs International ShortFest award.

Hank, by Chinese writer/director Hongyu Li, follows the story of a married gay man, scared of losing his relationship. His partner wants to spice things up, but Hank feels he’s been forced into agreeing to an open marriage.

After reluctantly agreeing to an open relationship, middle-aged Hank starts a wild journey with a mysterious young man. But, he soon discovers he’s put himself in danger.

Dangers of open marriage

Narrowly escaping with just his life, and forced to walk home alone and naked in the middle of the night, Hank realises the compromise he made to save his marriage has gone too far.


The film has been selected by a number of high-profile film festivals. However, it is now in contention at the prestigious, Oscar qualifying, Palm Springs International ShortFest.

Hongyu’s second film, Hank, is already an award-winner. It won Best LGBTQ Film at the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival and best short film at the LA Movie Awards.

Born in 1994 and raised in Beijing, Hongyu developed his filmmaking skills at the New York Film Academy with an MFA in filmmaking.

He made his directorial debut with the multi-award winning short film Waiting For Frank (2017) about the effects of Alzheimer’s.

This film received an Official Selection at Cannes Short Corner, won the Remi Award at Houston Film Fest, as well as an award at the Hollywood International Moving Picture Film Festival, a nomination at the Los Angeles Independence Film Festival, and was in the Official Selection at the Asian World Film Festival.

Hongyu’s cultural background makes him sensitive to racial, gender, ageing, and LGBTI issues. Hank is his second short film. He currently lives in Los Angeles.

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