SIPFF 2023 2023.11.02(Thu.) ~ 2023.11.08(Wed.)

Hot Pink Section

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Hot Pink Section |

A section where we present an important issue from each year, as well as screen films that have grabbed the attention of the Seoul Pride Film Festival

The Hot Pink Section will aim to combine the different perspectives represented in the Asia Pride Section and the World Pride Section and stage issues and slogans that the Seoul Pride Film Festival wishes to convey to its audience of that year. In 2011 we focused on the ‘rights of sexual minorities in the military,’ in 2012, ‘conflict and harmony within the family,’ in 2013, ‘resistance and solidarity against prejudice and discrimination,’ in 2014, ‘love that overcomes hate.’ The issue that the Seoul Pride Film Festival wishes to meditate on this year in 2015 is ‘marriage equality and partnership.’

Each year with the Hot Pink Section, the Seoul Pride Film Festival will lead audiences step-by-step towards a more progressive and wide understanding of the lives of sexual minorities.

On June 26th this year, the American Supreme Court ruled that “no state can ban same sex marriage,” thus legalizing same sex marriage across the US. This monumental ruling in the history of the rights of sexual minorities came as great news to not just Korea, but to the whole world. In Korea, we were struck by the rainbow profile pictures that covered our newsfeed on a particular social networking service. President Barack Obama even demonstrated his support by Tweeting, “Today’s DOMA ruling is a historic step forward for marriage equality.”

In nearby Japan, Shibuya’s district court passed an ordinance bill stating that they would recognize same sex couples. Following this, a lesbian celebrity couple held a public wedding and decorated news headlines. In Korea as well, the Kim Jho Kwangsoo and Kim Seunghwan couple garnered much attention for holding a public wedding on Kwangtong Bridge on Cheonggye Creek on September 7th, 2013—the first of its kind for a same sex couple. After filing a lawsuit against the rejection of their marriage registration forms, they are awaiting results the first trial they attended on July 6th. This couple is at the center of even further public interest for the open support they received from Ginsburg, one of the nine wise pillars of the Supreme Court. This support was represented in their evening of dining with the US Supreme Court justice.

Moreover, going in step with the advancements towards legalization of marriage equality, the Seoul Pride Film Festival has chosen “marriage equality and partnership” as its keynote this year. We will present films of this motif in the Hot Pink Section.

Freeheld, the closing film for this year’s Seoul Pride Film Festival, is a film that you must not miss.

Freeheld is based on a true story that was first released as a documentary in 2008 which won an Oscar for Best Documentary as well as the Special Jury Prize at Sundance. It received critical acclaim and was soon produced as this feature length movie. The film is currently receiving much attention in Korea for its two leading actresses, Julianne Moore, an Academy Award winner for Best Actress, who plays the lesbian officer Laurel Hester, and Ellen Page, the young talented actress who is also openly lesbian and who plays Stacie Andree.

Limited Partnership is a documentary depicting the love and struggle of American Richard and Australian Tony who were wed in 1975 but whose same sex marriage was not recognized by the American immigration office. They fought for 39 years to have their relationship legally recognized. Richard and Tony were the first to bring up a lawsuit in federal court after being infuriated by the insulting official refusal statement, “[Adams and Sullivan] have failed to establish that a bona fide marital relationship can exist between two faggots.”

Der Kreis is a docudrama about the lives and love of Ernst and Robi, Switzerland’s first openly gay couple and members of the legendary gay magazine, Der Kreis, which was published internationally from 1932 till 1967. This film exquisitely puts together historic material and scenes of narrative filmmaking to create a high level of completion and a strong mass appeal. It received both the Teddy Award for Best Documentary and the Panorama Audience Award at the 2014 Berlin Film Festival. Ernst and Robi attended the award ceremony in person and their love and courage received a standing ovation from the jury and audience members of the film festival.

Love is Strange is the new film by Ira Sachs, director of the opening film of the 2012 Seoul LGBT Film Festival, Keep the Lights On. The two protagonists of the film are an old gay couple who finally have their wedding ceremony after 39 years. However, they must inevitably live separately when they run into financial problems after one of them is suddenly fired due to religious prejudices at the workplace. The story pokes at the fact that though their relationship is legally recognized, social prejudice and discrimination fragment this simple old couple without leaving them any social safety net.

Through these four films we wish to provide our audience an opportunity to rethink same sex marriage and partnership. Also by showing that related laws are in inseparably close proximity to the actual lives of sexual minorities and that these actually are important rights, we wish to promote support for same sex marriage and partnership.


○ Freeheld

○ The Circle

○ Love is Strange

○ Limited Partnership