Afghanistan, CanadaEnglishLGBTQ+ Filmmakers, Non-binary Filmmakers, Women Filmmakers

Desh Pardesh centred the work and expressions of South Asian and Indo Caribbean diaspora and had its roots in the queer communities of Toronto. Although no similar space has been created since, the legacy and impact of the festival continues.

The shorts in this program include works screened two decades ago at Desh Pardesh, as well as films made last year by a cohort of South Asian and Indo Caribbean emerging filmmakers who participated in Inside Out Festival’s Short Film Lab. Despite the absence of a dedicated space like Desh Pardesh, resistance and community building through the arts remains present. In this program, two generations of artists come together to exhibit and reflect on the need and power of creating space to learn, experiment, discuss, create, and collaborate on works that fully centre their identity and politics.


Yazmeen Kanji Profile Image

Canada202013 minEnglishWomen Filmmakers

A young, queer, non-binary, Muslim storyteller walks us through the spaces and people that have shaped her healing and growth from some of the most trying moments in her past.


Active Listener symbol  An Active Listener will be available to offer one-on-one peer support for viewers who may find the content of this presentation triggering. More info on how to access here.


Director Bio

Yazmeen Kanji

Yazmeen Kanji is a TIFF Next Wave and Hot Docs Accelerator filmmaker and founder of Films With A Cause. She works at Charles Officer’s Canesugar Filmworks, and supports Oscar nominee Sami Khan’s projects.


Premika Ratnam and Ali Kazimi Profile Image


​​In the middle of a raging winter storm, 350 women from across Canada met in Winnipeg to attend the 1986 National Conference of Immigrant & Visible Minority Women to form a national organization representing the needs of two million Canadians.

Director Bio

Premika Ratnam and Ali Kazimi

Premika Ratnam was born and educated in India. An independent filmmaker by disposition, she founded Shadow Catcher Productions in 1987, producing and directing educational films on a variety of social issues. With A Cause. She works at Charles Officer’s Canesugar Filmworks, and supports Oscar nominee Sami Khan’s projects.

Ali Kazimi was born and raised in India. He moved to Canada in 1983, earning his BFA in film production from York University. Based in Toronto, Kazimi is an internationally acclaimed documentary filmmaker. 


Rojelio Palacios Profile Image

Canada202010 minEnglishLGBTQ+ Filmmakers

After trying on a binder and a packer for the first time, Krishna, a trans man, has to face his own insecurities during his journey of overcoming his fear of passing and of coming out. 


Closed Cqptions symbol  This presentation has closed captions.



Director Bio

Rojelio Palacios

Rojelio Palacios is a queer, transgender artist, born in Mexico and currently based out of Toronto. Through his work, Palacios explores themes of gender, sexuality, and what it means to be trans.


Shani Mootoo Profile Image

Canada199412 minEnglishWomen Filmmakers

A video poem about one woman's longing and desire for another whom she is shy to approach. 

Director Bio

Shani Mootoo

Shani Mootoo is an Ireland-born Indo Trinidadian Vancouverite and multimedia artist, best known for her single-channel video work, poetry, and novels.


Nakita Sunar Profile Image

Canada202012 minEnglishLGBTQ+ Filmmakers

Nectar is a portrait film that explores the beauty and complexities of fatness, queerness, race, joy, desire, and body autonomy.


Closed Cqptions symbol  This presentation has closed captions.

Director Bio

Nakita Sunar

Nakita Sunar is a mental health provider, emerging filmmaker, and educator. Nakita received her Masters of Education from OISE. Nakita believes that filmmaking is her way of creating accessible education that embodies art, storytelling, and social change.


Sadiah Rahman Profile Image

Canada20208 minEnglishLGBTQ+ Filmmakers, Non-binary Filmmakers

Life at home for Maya isn’t the best, but things are different when she’s with her friend, Neelam. After a heated argument with her parents, Maya goes over to Neelam’s. The tensions that rise between them reveal the undeniable love and hurt they carry.


Closed Cqptions symbol  This presentation has closed captions.


Director Bio

Sadiah Rahman

Sadiah Rahman is a photographer, writer, director, and arts worker based out of Toronto. In their work, they aim to understand the nuances of queer and Muslim identities, disabilities, and marginalization with an empathetic lens.


Neesha Meminger Profile Image


A series of rhythmically repeated images of self-caress and cleansing are used to express an Asian woman's sense of emerging self, her growing strength, and her desire for the erotic touch of another.

Director Bio

Neesha Meminger

Neesha Meminger’s films have been screened internationally, and she is the published author of seven novels. More information about Neesha and her work can be found on her website: NeeshaMeminger.com


10 Nov, 2021

to 19 Nov, 2021



Live online Q&A with special guests

Join us in conversation with directors and special guests in attendance! ASL interpretation will be made available thanks to Toronto Sign Language Interpreter Services. Ticket holders can watch on the CineSend Reel Asian portal.

November 13, 2020 at 8PM

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