Tag Archives: Queer Film Award

TEDDY ACTIVIST AWARD – WINNER

The TEDDY AWARD and the award donator HARALD CHRIST, entrepreneur and longtime TEDDY supporter, will present the TEDDY ACTIVIST AWARD for the first time this year. The award includes a donation of 5.000 € and will be presented annually in the future in the scope of the TEDDY AWARD ceremony. 

Inspired by the work and courage of so many activists who fight for the ongoing struggle of sexual and gender minorities all over the world, the TEDDY ACTIVIST AWARD honours people who work for change under difficult circumstances and in a non-supportive political and social environment and thus contribute to tolerance, acceptance, justice and equality in the world. In many parts of the world, this means putting oneself and the people around you at risk and exposing oneself to rejection, marginalization, isolation and persecution. The award is intended to honour the courage and determination of these people.

The TEDDY ACTIVIST AWARD 2020 goes to a group of activists who, at risk to their own lives, courageously and resolutely save and rescue persecuted homosexuals and transsexuals in Chechnya from imprisonment, torture and murder and bring them to safety. The TEDDY and Harald Christ pay tribute to these courageous people with deep respect and hope that this prize will help to ensure that the continuing silence and look away of the so-called “free world” finally turns into a worldwide outcry of indignation and that the perpetrators are ostracized and held accountable by the world community.

The Gay Pogrom in Chechnya:

On April 1, 2017, the Novaya Gazeta, an independent Russian newspaper, reported that government security officials were abducting, detaining, and torturing gay men in Chechnya, demanding that these men divulge the names of other gays whom they would then abduct, detain, and torture as well. Chechnya’s President Ramzan Kadyrov has openly described the goal of this campaign as an effort “to cleanse our blood.” He has called upon family members to carry out so-called “honor killings.”

There are no estimates of the number of the dead. Hundreds of Chechens have simply disappeared since the atrocities began, and hundreds more have escaped.

Leaders of the St. Petersburg-based Russian LGBTQI* Network established a hotline in the early days of the pogrom. They set up a series of secret safe-houses throughout the country, in partnership with other LGBTQI* organizations, especially The Moscow Community Center for LGBT+ Initiatives.

In the first two years, they moved 151 people out of the Chechnya and beyond the Russian border. Countries receiving them include Canada, Germany, France, Norway, Belgium, the Netherlands, Argentina, and elsewhere. The US government rejected all applicants stemming from the pogrom. 

Response from Chechen Leadership:

Ramzan Kadyrov immediately denied the accusations when they first surfaced, calling them “lies.” What’s more, he says it is impossible to carry out such crimes because they “don’t have that kind of people here. We don’t have gays.” Despite these statements, Kadyrov has publicly endorsed so-called “honor killings,” urging families to murder relatives suspected of being gay, lesbian, or transgender. His press secretary stated: “If there were such people in Chechnya, the law-enforcement agencies wouldn’t need to have anything to do with them because their relatives would send them to a place of no return.” Those who commit such murders face no criminal ramifications. Russian President Vladimir Putin accepted Kadyrov’s denials. Yet under pressure from international leaders, Putin briefly moved forward with a widely criticized investigation, which found no witnesses and victims willing to give testimony, fearing retribution. The Kremlin claimed the lack of testimony was proof that no human rights abuses had occurred. 

Lesbians and Transgender Women and Men are Also Targeted:

Although much of the reporting on this subject has focused on gay men, Chechen lesbians and transgender women have reported similar treatment. Survivors have commonly spoken about forced religious exorcisms and involuntary commitments to psychiatric hospitals, as well as torture and detention. Evidence has also surfaced of so-called “honor killings” of lesbians. 

Women have little autonomy in Chechnya’s interpretation of Islam. Male family members generally accompany them when they are outside of their homes, making their efforts to escape to safety even more difficult — and dangerous — than for men.

The Victims are Being Hunted Around the World:

Since the operational goal of Kadyrov’s government is the elimination from the Chechen bloodline of LGBTQI people, fleeing the country doesn’t give victims safety.  Authorities pressure Chechen families to hunt them down and return them for execution. And their reach is surprisingly far. There is a vast global diaspora of people who fled during the two Chechnya wars. 

In November 2019, officials called upon diaspora members to enforce Chechen mores wherever they live. In remarks widely seen as referring to gay people, Kadyrov’s right-hand man said: “I’m telling you, those who live in Europe, America and Canada: Stop such people! By law, with our traditions and customs, we should resolve their problem,” said Adam Delimkhanov. “We implore you, don’t let them embarrass the honor of our nation.”  There have been cases of Chechens being tricked into returning or being forced in their new country to record denials of their homosexuality. Some have been attacked in their host countries. 

It’s Not a Good Time to be Gay in Much of the World:

The persecution of gay people is not exclusive to Chechnya. According to ILGA-Europe, there are 70 countries worldwide where being gay is criminalized, including 11 countries where the death penalty could be imposed.

However, what is happening in Chechnya is categorically different. It is the only government since Nazi Germany to round up LGBTQI people for extermination. 

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

Masha Gessen, “The Gay Men Who Fled Chechnya’s Purge, New Yorker, July 3, 2017 https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/07/03/the-gay-men-who-fled-chechnyas-purge 

Masha Gessen, “Fleeing Anti-Gay Persecution in Chechnya, Three Young Women Are Now Stuck in Place,” New Yorker, October 1, 2018 https://www.newyorker.com/news/our-columnists/fleeing-anti-gay-persecution-in-chechnya-three-young-women-are-now-stuck-in-place

“They Have Long Arms and They Can Find Me: Anti-Gay Purge by Local Authorities in Russia’s Chechen Republic,” A Human Rights Watch Report, May 26, 2017 https://www.hrw.org/report/2017/05/26/they-have-long-arms-and-they-can-find-me/anti-gay-purge-local-authorities-russias 

“Honor Kill: How the Ambitions of a Famous LGBT Activist Awoke a Terrible Ancient Custom in Chechnya, Elena Milashina,” Novaya Gazetta, April 1, 2017 https://novayagazeta.ru/articles/2017/04/01/71983-ubiystvo-chesti 

“Novaya Gazetta Learned of New Gay Persecution in Chechnya,” Novaya Gazetta, January 11, 2019 https://novayagazeta.ru/news/2019/01/11/148260-chechnya 

ILGA Europe, “Sexual Orientation Laws in the World, 2019” https://ilga.org/downloads/ILGA_Sexual_Orientation_Laws_Map_2019.pdf 

TEDDY TODAY: Friday 15th February

Woohoo! Do you know what special day today is? Well of course you do, it’s Teddy day! This is going to be a history-making event, because the 33rdTeddy award is going to blast you off the roofs! Artists, movies, performances, everything and more during the award ceremony starting at 21.00 at the Volksbühne. You know you’re excited! And it doesn’t end there, the after-show party, of which you’ve surely heard of, is going to start at 23.30 right after the ceremony ends. Hopefully you’ve got your tickets and already know what to wear, we’re so excited to see you there. But in the meantime, we’ve got one new movie we want you to see and several rescreens you could binge on. 

Les Nuits Fauves
12:15 CinemaxX 8 

Jean loves Laura; he is also in a relationship with Samy, and HIV-positive. The three exhaust themselves on a rollercoaster ride of feverish emotions, electrified by longing and a raging lust for life, walking the line between passion and destruction.

Rescreens:
Bulbul Can Sing – 10:00 Zoo Palast 2
Four Quartets – 11:00 CinemaxX 1
Heute oder Morgen – 12:00 Colosseum 1 
Entropia – 13:00 Zoo Palast 2, Colosseum 1
La Fiera y la Fiesta – 14:00 Cubix 9
Lemebel – 14:30 CineStar 7 
Schönheit & Vergänglichkeit – 14:30 Colosseum 1 
Lidérc Úr – 16:00 CinemaxX 5
Demons – 16:30 CineStar 8
Serpentário – 21:30 Delphi Filmpalast
Ne Croyez Surtout Pas Que Je Hurle – 22:00 Kino Arsenal 1
Normal – 22:30 CineStar 7

2017 TEDDY-Jury

Good News!!!!

We are happy to announce the participants of the 2017 TEDDY-Jury!

This Year Gizem Bayiksel (Turkey), Sachiko Imai (Japan), Hassan Kamoga (Uganda), Saadat Munir (Denmark), Marjo Pipinen (Finland) Carl Spence (USA) und Martin Wolkner (Germany) will be part of the TEDDY-Jury.

Gizem Bayiksel

Bayiksel Gizem - Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD
Bayiksel Gizem – Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD

Gizem Bayiksel was born in Ankara in 1989. She has been working as a photographer and cinematographer in the film industry for over 5 years. Since 2012 she has also been working for numerous events and film festivals as a coordinator, programmer and film curator. Currently she is the festival coordinator and programmer of Pink Life QueerFest, the first and only queer film festival in Turkey. Pink Life QueerFest was launched in Ankara in 2011 and the festival is a space for LGBTQI individuals and artists to raise awareness for LGBTQI issues. Bayiksel’s personal interest in film and photography focuses on the female gaze and queer theory. She is currently working on her first feature film project, a sequel for her short “Child’s Play”,  a lesbian couple’s story with Turkish politics on the background.

Sachiko Imai

Sachiko Imai  - Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD
Sachiko Imai – Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD

Sachiko Imai is the programming director of Rainbow Reel Tokyo (formerly known as Tokyo International Lesbian & Gay Film Festival), which is one of the longest-running LGBT film festivals in Asia. Sachiko studied screenwriting at Nihon University College of Art where she received a Bachelor Degree in Film. After working in publishing for a while, she started her career as a translator, specializing herself in subtitles. She has translated numerous films and TV shows in Japanese, including some queer masterpieces such as “Weekend”, “Stranger by the Lake” and Showtime’s “The L Word” series. Imai also works as a coordinator for various film festivals in Japan.

Hassan Kamoga

Hassan Kamoga - Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD
Hassan Kamoga – Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD

Hassan Kamoga is a young Ugandan human rights activist and filmmaker. In 2016 he founded the Queer Kampala International Film Festival (QKIFF), the first and only LGBTQ Film Festival in Uganda and the only gay film festival organized in a country where homosexuality is illegal. QKIFF offers a powerful platform to promote and progress LGBTIQ rights through film advocacy in homophobic Uganda. Kamoga has produced a number of short documentaries for non-profit organizations in Uganda, Rwanda, Malawi, Egypt, Mozambique and Swaziland. He believes that social justice film-making has the power to change hearts, minds, and laws. Currently Kamoga Hassan is in pre-production for his latest documentary entitled ‘Where is Home’ about Ugandans seeking asylum in other countries.

Saadat Munir

Saadat Munir - Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD
Saadat Munir – Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD Photo: Nadia Hosted

Saadat Munir was born into the dichotomy of European and Asian cultures. From childhood, he was blessed with the opportunity to experience both cultures equally, having been raised in Denmark by his Pakistani parents. His love for culture grew and led him to receiving a degree in Communications from South Denmark University. In his short time as a filmmaker, Munir has been awarded several honours for his work and has recently been an official Talent at Berlinale 2015. Presently, Munir is a creative director of Aks Film, Art and Dialogue, a bi-national film festival for minorities and marginalized communities that illuminate sociopolitical aspects of transgender, queer, people of color (POC) living in Pakistan and Denmark. The film festival has played a very important role in bringing forth the challenges transgender women face in Pakistan and this festival is first of its kind which is officially run and organised by transgender and queer community in Pakistan.

Marjo Pipinen

Marjo Pipinen - Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD
Marjo Pipinen – Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD

Marjo Pipinen is programmer for Love & Anarchy – Helsinki International Film Festival, the biggest film festival in Finland. In 2002–2009, she worked as programmer for Vinokino, the Finnish queer film festival. Pipinen holds a Master’s Degree in Film Studies from Stockholm University. In her Master’s thesis, she wrote about archival aesthetics in New Queer Cinema. After her studies, Pipinen took office at Media Desk Finland and the Finnish Film Foundation, and she currently works in communications at the National Audiovisual Institute in Finland (formerly the Finnish Film Archive). Pipinen keeps a queer-feminist film blog (HQFEB) focusing on events around Helsinki. She is interested in cinema on the margins and she prefers to see films on the big screen. Festivals are her passion and she is voluntarily involved in the organization of many kinds of cultural events.

Carl Spence

Carl Spence 31. TEDDY AWARD Jury member
Carl Spence 31. TEDDY AWARD Jury member

Carl Spence began curating films and concerts during the grunge era in Seattle. He began his festival career at the Seattle International Film Festival in 1994, helping grow the Festival to become one of the largest film events in North America over the past two decades. He also led SIFF’s expansion into a year-round exhibition, making SIFF the leading independent arthouse exhibitor in Seattle by saving two historic cinemas along with the creation of a new flagship Film Center.  He most recently held the the position of Festival Director and Chief Curator at SIFF prior to starting his own consulting film, CCS Arts in late 2016.  He also held Director of Programming positions with the Palm Springs International Film Festival and with the San Francisco International Film Festival. In 2014, he helped create the Orcas Island Film Festival as a Festival co-director and the chief curator.

Martin Wolkner

Martin Wolkner - Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD
Martin Wolkner – Jury member 31. TEDDY AWARD

Martin Wolkner studied Linguistics and Film Studies and is the founder and head of homochrom Film Festival. Established in 2009 as a monthly film series in six cities in North Rhine Westphalia, homochrom 2011 was supplemented by a queer film festival in Cologne and Dortmund. Wolkner initiated and launched the debut film prize of the German festival co-operation QueerScope, which was first awarded in 2016. As a member of German Film Critics Association he writes for online magazines and since 2010 – for the gay magazine called Box. Martin Wolkner has previously worked for the International Women’s Film Festival Dortmund | Cologne and is translating and making subtitles for DVD productions. Currently he is developing his own film projects as a writer.

31st TEDDY AWARD, ticket presale has begun

At the 17th of February 2017 we are going to celebrate the 31st TEDDY AWARD and the preparations are in full swing! The venue for the award ceremony and the TEDDY PARTY with live concerts and DJ-Lounge will be at the Haus der Berliner Festspiele in Schaperstraße 24, 10719 Berlin.

The artist duo cabine is responsible again for the artwork of the 31st TEDDY AWARD.

Tickets for the 31st TEDDY AWARD Ceremony and the big Backstage Party are available from now on in the Online Shop. Ticket reservation is possible via e-mail at tickets@papagena.de or on the telephone via the Ticket Hotline 030 – 4799 7447. Without booking fee the tickets are available at Prinz Eisenherz Bookshop, Motzstraße 23, 10777 Berlin.

For the special support of the Teddy e.V., we offer a limited amount of Premium Tickets. With the purchase of a Premium Ticket, you will be guest of honour in the best seating category. Furthermore, you will be invited to an exclusive pre-reception between 6.30 and 8.00 pm on the evening of the ceremony. Here you can purchase your Premium Ticket.

The award ceremony starts directly after the opening at 9pm. After the ceremony we are going to celebrate  the TEDDY Backstage PARTY  with live concerts and DJ-Lounge until dawn.

DATES:
09.02.- 19.02.2017 67. Internationale Filmfestspiele Berlin

FRIDAY, Feb. 17, 2017
21:00 TEDDY AWARD Ceremony, in the Haus der Berliner Festspiele
23:00 TEDDY 31 Backstage PARTY with live concerts and DJ-Lounge


TICKETS
Premium Ticket cat. A incl. reception: 138,- EUR
Seat category A: 69,- EUR
Seat category B: 48,- EUR
Seat category C: 32,- EUR

Screening Lounge: 25,- EUR
Party: 15,- EUR

(All tickets include the entrance to the parties and concerts on the 17th of February in the Haus der Berliner Festspiele.)

TICKET HOTLINE & INFO Tel.: +49-(0)30-4799 7474

The TEDDY AWARD is a non-profit event. The TEDDY AWARD finances itself only by contributions of sustaining members and patrons of the Teddy e.V., by donation of supporters, the contribution of many voluntary helpers as well as sponsors and the earnings of the award ceremony.