Skip to main content

// Films // Children 404

Children 404

Askold Kurov & Pavel Loparev / Russia / 2014 / 70 ' / Russian / S.T. English

Credits

Pavel Loparev, Askold Kurov & Lena Rem
Askold Kurov & Pavel Loparev
Askold Kurov & Pavel Loparev
Askold Kurov & Pavel Loparev

Awards & Festivals

World Premiere: Hot Docs, Toronto, 2014

Upcoming Screenings

Stay tuned for upcoming screenings!

In Production

Produced in secret and on a shoestring budget, this disquieting doc exposes the plight and champions the fight of LGBTQ youth in Putin's Russia.

Synopsis

In 2013, Russian President Vladimir Putin passed a bill forbidding the “promotion of nontraditional sexual relations to minors.” LGBT youth, now defenseless against insults and intimidation under this “gay propaganda” law, are considered sick, sinful and abnormal. Psychologists, teachers and even parents can be fined or imprisoned for supporting them. Forty-five Russian teens and tweens share their stories through anonymous interviews and video diaries. They detail their humiliations and discriminations, as well as their courageous stands against bullies. Their testimonies are collected online as the Children 404 project, named after the common “error 404 - page not found” web message. The support group’s founder struggles within the system to bring public attention and empathy to the victims of this government-endorsed hate, while activist Pasha decides he must leave his homeland altogether if he hopes to find a boyfriend and lead a normal life. Has a new Stone Age arrived in Russia?

Project Info

In the Fall of 2013 a Russian documentary filmmaker contacted numerous LGBTQ activists and filmmakers from Canada and the United States, including Cinema Politica, who had worked with them in previous years to screen their films. The message they sent was a request to help fund a film that they believe desperately needed to be made: a documentary by Russian LGBTQ identified people about the impact of the recent anti-gay propaganda law on LGBTQ identified young people.  They reached out to us because this film will be impossible to make without the financial support from the international LGBTQ community since funding for such a project is not only impossible, but illegal within the Russian federation. In response, Cinema Politica co-founders Svetla Turnin and Ezra Winton, along with CP Board Member and Concordia University Research Chair in Sexual Representation and in Documentary Thomas Waugh and his colleague Ryan Conrad, launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise essential funds for this project. We eventually surpassed our goal and were able to raise $11,575 USD towards the making of CHILDREN 404!

We are still committed to this important project, and we were honoured to co-present CHILDREN 404’s world premiere at Hot Docs this spring.

 

Join us on Facebook