11:21 pm - 01/10/2012

Michael Stipe produces gay Korean film



Former REM frontman Michael Stipe is the executive producer behind a new short film of a gay Korean man who yearns for a family, which the director used to come out to his own parents.

The short, entitled Dol, will be shown at the Sundance Film Festival this year, Indie music news site Electric Banana reports.

Writer and director Andrew Ahn says he used the film to come out to his own parents, who agreed to feature in it as actors without knowing their son was gay.

In the film, Nick is a gay Korean-American man living in Los Angeles’ Korean neighbourhood with his partner.

When Nick attends his nephew’s dol, a traditional Korean first birthday party, he finds himself longing for a life out of reach to him.

Ahn said: “I made this film to come out to my parents. I knew I wouldn’t be able to tell them, to say the words ‘I’m gay’.

“So I cast my family in the film, but never told them that it was about a gay Korean-American man. The filmmaking process both distracted from and prepared me for the inevitable – that I would eventually have to show my parents the finished film.”

Stipe came out in 2008, telling US magazine Spin: “I was totally open with the band and my family and my friends and certainly the people I was sleeping with. I thought it was pretty obvious.

“I’d just never felt strongly enough about a particular relationship to say, ‘Yeah, he’s my boyfriend, that is what it is.’

“Now I recognise that to have public figures be very open about their sexuality helps some kid somewhere out there.”

Article: Pink News
Video: Dol Trailer by Andrew Ahn
litost 10th-Jan-2012 03:58 pm (UTC)
i'm interested in seeing this.
sobaek 10th-Jan-2012 05:24 pm (UTC)
This. As much as I don't think it's a big deal whether you are gay or bi or pan or asexual and it's probably not the 'public interest' to know the ins and outs of everyone's life (as in when say UK journalists out people without their permission in the name of public interest) if public figures could have the right to be openly LGBT, then people would get used to the idea that gay people exist, and they look and talk and behave ~totally normal~. They are nothing to fear! They will not destroy your homes! They aren't evil!
Just stepping up and coming out, and not 'pretending' or hiding their sexualities would be such a big step and gives young people someone to look up to and a sense of belonging.
black_silver 10th-Jan-2012 05:32 pm (UTC)
Absolutely, BUT at the same time, it also really bothers me when people rag on celebrities for staying in the closet for whatever reason. I agree that people (especially young people) need role models to look to for encouragement/reassurance as well as activism, but ultimately, it's an individual's choice whether or not to reveal something so personal and so vulnerable. It's generally not a decision to be made lightly, and although celebrities do have certain social privileges and padding, I believe it's still not anybody's place to demand that they offer up that part of themselves when those individuals are the ones who will have to live with the consequences of their actions.

:| Tricky double-edged sword. People who identify as LGBTQ shouldn't even have to prove their "normalcy" in the first place (but obviously, this world is far from ideal...).

Blah.
asnindie 10th-Jan-2012 05:35 pm (UTC)
It can be helpful though, especially to people in repressive societies like Asia where they have no gay role models who have come out and remained in the public eye.
black_silver 10th-Jan-2012 05:39 pm (UTC)
certainly it can -- i'm not arguing against its efficacy or its necessity (in fact i strongly wish there were more lgbtq role models in china, where i live, and in asia in general), only that i don't think it's fair to push people out of the closet because of that necessity

(also, i wouldn't necessarily classify 'asia' as one monolithic society)
sobaek 10th-Jan-2012 05:51 pm (UTC)
>People who identify as LGBTQ shouldn't even have to prove their "normalcy" in the first place

thissss I've never made a fuss of my sexuality and also never hid it. If people ash me i will tell them but as far as I'm concerned its not anyone's business unless they are intending on having sex with me. I hate that there is this expectation that gays will corrupt the children and jump on every man they see or lesbians are there for male enjoyment or bisexuals are just greedy hos. No. No. We're just like straight people in the way we are attracted to people, we're just attacted to people who aren't the opposite sex. Or don't care about gender at all. It's normal. It's just preference.


More than wanting to encourage public figures to come out, have the mainstream media (in any country but Korea effing needs it) that accepts anyone that wants to come out and creates an environment in the entertainment industry where if you are gay and you want to keep it private, that's fine, and if you are gay and you feel some significance in it being public, you can be public and you won't damage your career in any way whatsoever in doing so. You won't be demonized. A big deal will not be made. You won't be blacklisted from family shows, certain channels or time slots. Just no fear whatsoever in being open about what is essentially part of who you are (though not a massively important part).


black_silver 10th-Jan-2012 06:05 pm (UTC)
ugggghhhh YES
T
H
I
S

this. all of it. acceptance. it doesn't fucking matter, so just accept whatever orientation a person is and then let everyone get on with their lives GOD.

and yeah about the "greedy hos" thing -- i was musing about how some people seem to think like all lgbtq people are greasy and WANT TO HAVE SEX WITH EVERYONE ALL THE TIME like uhhhhh no???? i once had a friend ask me what my orientation was (after much hemming & hawwing) and when i said that i generally don't discriminate based on gender she was like "oh okay i get it free lovin'~ i'm down with that"...i was just like wtf no, i have standards you dipshit. if a person says she likes shoes would you expect her to buy EVERY GODDAMN PAIR OF SHOES IN A STORE?? no.

gah why are some people so fucking dumb ~______~'
hibohabu 10th-Jan-2012 04:22 pm (UTC)
The trailer's pretty engaging on its own, but the circumstances of the filming are intriguing too. I think it takes a different kind of courage to come out to one's parents and essentially the public as Ahn did and hope he received their understanding and support.
asnindie 10th-Jan-2012 04:42 pm (UTC)
In b4 Netizens claim the White foreigner brought Homosexuality with him to Korea.
yesungholic 10th-Jan-2012 09:48 pm (UTC)
what you said it would be funny if it wasn't something that will probably happen.
letsrelapse 10th-Jan-2012 05:07 pm (UTC)
I really want to see this. I'm always interested in Korean lgbt cinema especially as it still seems to be such a big taboo within the Korean culture in comparison to where I live. The way in which Ahn has gone about filming it seems it'll make for interesting viewing too. Plus, as a REM fan, if Michael Stipe is backing it then it should be good!
saphbluedreams 10th-Jan-2012 05:22 pm (UTC)
Wow this is legit. Good for him.
chichi89 10th-Jan-2012 05:29 pm (UTC)
Interesting.
And I just wanted to say that I love R.E.M.
uledy 10th-Jan-2012 06:14 pm (UTC)
I guess since REM is no more he needs something to do
nortonamo 10th-Jan-2012 07:18 pm (UTC)
you had me at michael stipe.
i've actually gone to a few sundance festivals with my uncle, but this year i turned down the offer because i need to focus on school.
kind of bumming that i did that because i'd love to see this and a few other films.
feel_my_mind 10th-Jan-2012 08:19 pm (UTC)
Off topic:

So I totally read this quote

"I was totally open with the band and my family and my friends and certain people I was sleeping with"

and was laughing at that (I took it as joke/sarcasm, not that he was playing both sides/lying to people)


But, I never knew he was gay [REM front man] and I respect him that honestly. I hate the big hoopla some celebs go through over being gay. They make it their identity almost. Another words his description isn't "gay former rem front man" but a "rem front man and film producers that happens to also be gay."... And if your lost, I don't blame you, its hard to explain what I'm trying to say that.
lee_chikin 10th-Jan-2012 08:22 pm (UTC)
The original and "real" idea behind the shooting and Michael Stipe's presence tell me this film is gonna be a good work.
devilstay 10th-Jan-2012 09:44 pm (UTC)
This sounds great. I hope it goes welll.
baka_tenshi 10th-Jan-2012 09:44 pm (UTC)
this really looks interesting!
kaorutenshi 11th-Jan-2012 04:06 am (UTC)
Oh, Michael Stipe!
This sounds interesting.
mazical_djinni 11th-Jan-2012 04:43 am (UTC)
out of topic but does anyone know where to watch REC online
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