In what may be a sign of the times, a short film looking at the experiences of gay teenagers will be screened again today to school groups at the Opera House as part a major international children’s film festival. First Date is an evocative film that follows a teenager as he affirms his identity as a young gay man without the support of his family. The film already screened yesterday and is part of Little Big Shots children’s film festival that showcases films for, by and about kids aged 2-15. “It’s a sign of the times that Australian short films about gay youth can now find audiences in both gay film festivals as well as children’s film festivals,” writer and director John Tsioulos said. “This is a great opportunity for all young people to be exposed to and understand some of the issues facing gay youth and find out what support is available out there for them.” The film is based on Tsioulos’s own experiences as a youth worker in Sydney. “Speaking to dozens of young gay men through my job as a youth worker, I was constantly surprised at the similarities between each young man’s story and needed to create something that showed these people were not alone,” Tsioulos said. “The team that worked on the film are very proud that we have the opportunity to reach GLBT young people who might not yet be in contact with gay community.” The Little Big Shots children’s film festival first began in 2004 and has since grown into the only major stand-alone film festival for children in Australia. The festival focuses on diversity, world cultures, human values, emotional intelligence and other issues that face the youth of today. Little Big Shots has travelled all around Australia over the past month and will head to Perth after its run in Sydney. Online entries for the 2013 festival will open this September.

Kids Film Festival Goes Gay