While many had hoped the Arab Spring would bring more openness and freedom to Egypt, it seems things have become increasingly difficult on the LGBT front, including in the world of film. Earlier this year, two movies with (relatively mild) gay content were banned from the 35th Cairo International Film Festival. Now Pinknews reports that the country’s censors have demanded 13 scenes be cut from Egypt’s first homegrown movie that directly tackles gay subjects.
And that’s despite the fact there’s no sexually explicit content in the movie at all.
The film is Hany Fawzy’s Family Secrets, which is ‘based on the true story of a young gay man who grows up with a single mother and an elder brother who is subjected to child abuse. The story goes on to see the gay protagonist go on to see therapists about the fact that he is gay in an attempt to “cure” himself, and after going through the therapy, he finds that he no longer feels himself.’
Unsurprisingly, Fawzy is less than impressed with what the censors are trying to do, as he feels cutting so much will inevitably remove vital parts of the plot and damage the film. One of the scenes the censors want to butchers sees the main character come out to his sister, while in another he accuses his father of “being responsible for his sexual orientation”.
Although the movie may get cut in Egypt, hopefully the complete film will be able to be seen elsewhere.