Uganda: Film on LGBT ‘outings’ heads to U.S. screening

Philadelphia film/video festival selects ‘Outed: The Painful Reality’

Poster for "Outed"
Poster for “Outed”

The Ugandan film “Outed: The Painful Reality” has been selected for this year’s qFLIX film and video festival in Philadelphia.

The qFLIX festival, founded last year, is the successor to the QFest festival, which presented American and international lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and queer independent film in the American state of Pennsylvania from 1995 onward.

“Outed,” by Ugandan film director Hassan Kamoga, also known as Miracle, is  a drama about LGBT people who are killed after newspapers label them publicly as gay, as happened by activist David Kato in 2011.  Tabloids in Uganda and Kenya continue that practice to this day. (For the most recent example, see the article “Lesbians targeted by Ugandan tabloid” of June 1, 2015.)

The film had its Ugandan premiere in February.

“I started doing research for this film in 2011 but didn’t get the courage to bring it to life until last year when one of my gay friends was brutally murdered by a mob after he was outed by one of the tabloids,” Kamoga told an interviewer.

“We hope this will generate some fresh intellectual debate about the general status of gay people in Uganda, particularly about the role of media in escalating their plight,” Kamoga said.

The film project was difficult, because many Ugandans did not want to be associated with what was seen as a “gay film.” Kamoga had to keep the  production process secret, and many actors and associates still pulled out because they feared for their own safety.

The film was made on a shoe-string budget of under 10 million Ugandan shillings (about US $3,400).

For more information, read the article about “Outed” in The Critic or on the Denis Nzioka website.

Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, Erasing 76 Crimes. Contact him at [email protected]

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