Thursday 09 November 2017 06:00 pm

To mark the 50th anniversary of the decriminalization of homosexuality in the UK, join the British Council and partners on November 9 in Orlando for a film screening and panel discussion showcasing #FiveFilms4Freedom, the world's first and largest digital LGBT film festival. This event is supported by the Love is GREAT Britain campaign.


The event will feature a panel discussion on LGBT issues, featuring:

  • Moderator: Sherri Absher - One Orlando Alliance
  • Heather Wilkie - Executive Director, Zebra Coalition
  • Joe Saunders - Senior Political Director, Equality Florida
  • Terry DeCarlo - Development and Chief Comms Director, GLBT Center for Central Florida
  • Rosie Westhoff - filmmaker, director of Crush
  • Jonny Ruff - filmmaker, director of Heavy Weight


The five short films selected for #FiveFilms4Freedom 2017 include both drama and documentaries and tell stories of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender experiences. They range from the tentative steps of first love, through an intimate portrait of an extraordinary family, to an exuberant picture of underground cultural expression. This year, for one year only, all five films are from the UK.

Film Director Description
Crush Rosie Westhoff An almost wordless story of the flash of first love as a young girl waits for her train in Britain.
Where We Are Now Lucie Rachel An intimate documentary portrait of the relationship between a transgender parent and her bisexual daughter in Scotland.
Heavy Weight Jonny Ruff A boxer finds his world turned upside down by the arrival of a new fighter at the club.
Still Burning Nick Rowley Era, a young migrant from Guadeloupe living in Paris, introduces his brother to leotards, heels and the ‘fierce’ attitude of the dance movement ‘voguing’.
Jamie Christopher Manning After chatting to a guy online, shy Jamie makes the bold step to meet up with him in person.

About #FiveFilms4Freedom

#FiveFilms4Freedom is the world’s first global digital LGBT short-film program, created in collaboration between the British Council and the British Film Institute (BFI). In March 2017, audiences in London enjoyed these films as part of BFI Flare, the BFI’s LGBT film festival. At the same time, people from all over the world watched five films from the festival for free online. This year for one year only, all five films were UK productions. This was our way of marking the 50th anniversary in 2017 of the decriminalisation of homosexuality in the UK – a landmark moment for human rights. The programme built to a single campaign day – Tuesday, 21 March 2017 – when people everywhere were encouraged to watch and share the films in solidarity with LGBT communities in countries where freedom and equal rights are limited. In 2016, people in 179 countries worldwide watched the films, with 1.57 million views on websites and social media.

About Love is GREAT

VisitBritain’s Love is GREAT Britain campaign reinforces the fact that Britain is an all embracing choice for LGBT visitors. As part of the campaign, in 2017 the UK government is participating in local Pride events in 18 cities around the US, Canada and Mexico to highlight he UK as a champion of LGBT equality and a global leader in human rights across policy, business, arts and culture, and tourim. Come and discover Britain, where a warm welcome awaits. Enter to win a trip for two to Britain at #LoveIsGREAT