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Press Release: Derek Oyston Film Prize: 2012 winners announced 

2 April 2012

The Derek Oyston CHE Film Award for 2012 has been awarded to 365 Without 377, directed by Adele Tulli. The film celebrates a year since the Indian courts decriminalised gay sex, by ruling that the prohibition of gay sex under Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code was unconstitutional.

The award of £1,000 was announced at the closing Gala of the 2011 London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival, by Peter Scott-Presland, representing the Campaign For Homosexual Equality (CHE). Presenting the award, Scott-Presland said "This movie is hugely vibrant, alive with energy and affection. It shows us something we have lost in the UK, which is delight in each other. Lesbians delighting in gay men, gay men delighting in lesbians, both delighting in the hijras. It’s also beautifully shot, paced and edited, and boasts a terrific sound track."

For the first time, CHE this year also awarded a second prize, to This is What Love in Action Looks Like, directed by Morgan Jon Fox. This is a documentary about an American gay teenager who was sent to a camp intended to "cure" him of being gay, and the protests that resulted. Peter Scott-Presland commented "CHE is still fighting ithe battle against homophobia in some sections of the major world religions. We've awarded the second prize of £500 to This is What Love in Action Looks Like, for its study in religious indoctrination and a powerful story of overcoming it."

The Derek Oyston CHE Film Awards have been presented every year since 2009 by the Campaign for Homosexual Equality (CHE), in memory of Derek Oyston of Gateshead, who supported CHE by a very generous legacy. The award is for "the film screened in the London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival which most reflects the aims and objectives of CHE."

Peter Scott-Presland concluded "Looking at the winning film, I was struck by the very many resonances between what the characters were saying in present-day India and what CHE members were writing in the local newsletters in the 1970s. Because in many ways all the journeys we make as gay people are similar. In order to change the world, we first have to change ourselves. We have to find out who we are and who we want to be.

The judges for this year's film prize were:

  • Jason Barker (British Film Institute)
  • Seán McGouran (Secretary of CHE)
  • Nettie Pollard (CRH Executive Committee Member).

Brian Robinson, one of the programmers for the BFI London Lesbian & Gay Film Festival, is to speak at the next CHE Quarterly Meeting, 1:30pm at the Calthorpe Arms, 252 Gray's Inn Road, London WC1X 8JR.

For information about the Campaign for Homosexual Equality, and full details of upcoming events, see the website at www.c-h-e.org.uk. CHE is a democratic, member-led organization, campaigning to change the attitudes and laws that make life difficult for LGBT people.

For more about the Derek Oyston CHE Film Awards, see www.c-h-e.org.uk/filmawards.shtml.

For more about the BFI London Lesbian & Gay Film Festival, see www.bfi.org.uk/llgff.

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