Being different is hard enough. Try being a transgender person in a small Polynesian country.

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Being different is hard enough. Try being a transgender person in a small Polynesian country.

FACEBOOK LINK: Be Our Friend!

https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Queendom-of-Tonga/135152574488

TITLE CHANGE:

LIKE A LADY: THE FAKALEITIS OF TONGA is now THE QUEENDOM OF TONGA.

ABOUT:

50-minute personal narrative and observational documentary film with experimental elements. It has fiscal sponsorship with 501(c)(3) status from the Three Dollar Bill Cinema/Seattle Lesbian and Gay Film Festival non-profit organization.

STORY:

Brian, the only apparently out gay man to volunteer in the Peace Corps Tonga program (2005-2007) for as long as the staff could remember, is told to hide his sexuality. He soon must grapple with feeling as though he does not completely fit into his small village where he is an elementary school teacher. He quickly finds friendship and guidance with a group of Tongan boys and men who identify as fakaleitis (“like a lady”, though today the term leiti "lady" is used and preferred), who are looked upon with fascination and disdain by their fellow Tongans. During his 27 months of service in the Kingdom of Tonga, the leitis show Brian "how to be gay" on their turf in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

In addition to this personal narrative, The Queendom of Tonga profiles a select group of the leitis through the experience of a priviledged American white male living in their island nation. Meet Mergina, Joey, Hapakoki, Maile, Baby, 'Aisea, Marika, 'Epi Pola, Susi and Saskia: courageous, out-spoken, and poignant provocateurs.

The coronation of King George Tupou V, the Miss Galaxy pageant (talent contest for leitis), civil unrest and rioting in the Kingdom as democracy advocates demand increased representation from the monarchy, Peace Corps experience, and Tongan island life are highlighted.  

PURPOSE:

The intention of this documentary is to promote self-esteem and acceptance for LGBT people in Tonga and beyond, while presenting a rare opportunity to shed light upon this minute, otherwise overlooked community in this exotic, culturally traditional country rarely seen by the outside world.

REQUEST:

With Pinkstart's help, this is the final financial campaign to finalize completion of the animation sequences, music composition/rights and sound design. The Queendom of Tonga is in picture lock status: editing of story and picture is complete.

THE QUEENDOM OF TONGA will be completed February 2017 with your help!

PREVIOUS WORK:

CELLISTA, 2016 (Director: Brian Favorite) 

The relationship between artist and audience is a precarious affair. This modern day fairy tale explores a cellist confronting her fear that the work she shares with her audience can never be quite...good...enough.

HEKLINA, 2013 (Director: Brian Favorite)

Short film biography of San Francisco's chief drag performer, hostess and entrepreneur.

Broadcast on KQED's showcase program for the best documentary films about California made by independent filmmakers: Truly CA: Our State, Our Stories and Truly CA Shorts and on KQED's website:

http://www.kqed.org/arts/programs/trulyca/shorts/episode.jsp?essid=129279

GRATITUDE:

Malo 'aupito (thank you very much) for your continued support and good wishes!

TEAM:

Producer, Writer:

Brian Favorite http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1397817/

Director of Photography:

Stacy Barton http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3177465/

Editor:

Ray Tarara http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3818329/

Assistant Editor:

Kevin De Nicolo https://www.linkedin.com/pub/kevin-de-nicolo/75/55a/a16

Sound Design:

Doug Siebum http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3633554/

 

Animation:

Tess Martin http://www.tessmartinart.com/

Poster Design:

Mitch McGlocklin: https://vimeo.com/mitchmcglocklin

Ron Myers https://www.linkedin.com/pub/ron-myers/35/331/67

 
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$4,035
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27
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This project was succesfully funded on 2015-06-15
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    Funding period
    2015-04-21 - 2015-06-15 (55 days)