Catalogue Number: TVP067
Producer: Video Project, Inc.
Subject: Diversity, Documentary, Family Studies/Home Economics, Gender Studies, Guidance, Health, Psychology, Social Sciences, Sociology
Grade Level: 9 - 12, Post Secondary, Adult
Country Of Origin: United States
Copyright Year: 2015
Running Time: 15:00
Pink Boy is a verite-style documentary profiling the challenges of raising a young gender non-conforming boy growing up in a conservative area of rural Florida.
Six-year old Jeffrey likes nothing better than to put on a gown and dance for his two lesbian moms, who adopted him expecting they would raise a boy. Mom BJ successfully avoided dresses and girls' toys her entire life and admits she initially had a hard time when her son expressed feminine interests.
"Pink boys" have their unique challenges: they do not neatly fit into a single gender box, and instead create a space between genders, which this film explores. They like to dress in girl’s clothing and play with girl toys, but still identify as boys. These children often face widespread ignorance and shaming, sometimes from their own families. They often live with daily threats of bullying and violence and are at high risk for depression and suicide as they reach their teens.
Pink Boy’s verite-style allows the viewer to experience life through Jeffrey’s eyes. Thanks to supportive parents, we see Jeffrey confidently move between masculine and feminine in dress-up time at school, a rodeo in Georgia, and the ultimate holiday for a pink boy, Halloween. As Jeffrey increasingly wishes to be publicly identified as a girl called Jessie, his parents must learn both to accept and to navigate when it is safe for him in an often hostile environment.
• Best Short, DOC NYC 2015
• Jury Award, Best Documentary Short, Palm Springs ShortFest
• Audience Award, Best Short, Nantucket Film Festival
• Grand Prize, Viola M. Marshall Audience Choice Award for Best LGBTQ Film, Flickers: Rhode Island International Film Festival
• Jury Award for Best Short, MiFo LGBT Film Festival Fort Lauderdale
• Nominated for Short Doc, Sheffield Doc/Fest
Florida Film Festival
Traverse City Film Festival
Newport Beach Film Festival
Nashville Film Festival
Nantucket Film Festival
Palm Springs ShortFest
"An effective teaching tool, this program provides a discussion point on gender issues for educators and students." -Library Journal
"Recommended. A convincing argument for acknowledging inborn gender preferences."– Booklist (ALA)
"Illustrates that people can have different struggles with the gender identity of others but can overcome those struggles to be positive and supportive. It is a very quick glimpse of a young child's gender presentation and a unique angle on how that presentation affects others. ...It is heartening to see his mothers work through their issues and to support him on his gender quest."- Jack David Eller, Anthropology Review
"As a gay man who grew up in a different era, I experienced what it was like to be in the closet. I was inspired to make this film when I started hearing stories of families whose children expressed their gender differences at the earliest age. It made me start thinking about what would it be like if you grew up and you were never in the closet. And how would that affect your identity and your confidence and how you approach the world? So I had this vision of an entire generation of kids someday growing up that way. When I met BJ, Sherrie, and Jeffrey (now Jessie), I felt that I had found the family that could best tell this story.”
- Eric Rockey
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