Burmese Butterfly (12’03”)



Twenty-one-year-old hairdresser Phyo Lay looks back on a turbulent childhood and adolescence and describes how difficult it is to come out in Myanmar. A rare glimpse into the emergent gay community in this hitherto isolated country.

The Bamboo Grove


Director: Hnin Ei Hlaing

Camera: Khin Khin Hsu & Su Su Thaing Win

Sound: Hnin Ei Hlaing

Editor: Hnin Ei Hlaing


Born in Kyaukphyu in Rakhine State in 1985, Hnin Ei Hlaing entered the film industry with a diploma in computer art with the Forever Group and subsequently worked as an editor for MRTV4. Since joining YFS in 2006 she has worked as a regular sound recordist and/or editor on a number of YFS productions (including An Untitled Life, The Change Maker and A Bright Future). She says she knew nothing about Myanmar’s gay scene before deciding to make this portrait of her hairdresser. Burmese Butterfly marks her first film as a director.

Director’s filmography (selection)

2008 An Untitled Life (22’08”, sound recordist)

2008 The Change Maker (15’59”, sound recordist)

2009 Killing Time (10’18”, editor)

2010 A Bright Future (15’21”, sound recordist)

2011 Burmese Butterfly (12’03”, director, editor, sound recordist)

2011 The Bamboo Grove (18’42”, editor)

2011 Bungkus (18’50”, sound recordist)

2011 Respectful Encounters (17’17”, editor, sound recordist)

2011 Rice – Towards a better Future (32’17”, sound recordist)

2011 On Holiday (19′, sound recordist)

2011 Falling Blossom (5’49”, editor, sound recordist)

Screening History (selection)

October 2011 Festival International Signes de Nuit, Paris, France *Premiere*

February 2012 Lifescapes South East Asian Film Festival, Chiang Mai, Thailand

May 2012 Göttingen International Ethnographic Film Festival Student Competition, Germany

June 2012 Frameline 36 San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival, USA

June 2012 Sheffield Doc/Fest International Documentary Film Festival, England
***Nomination for Best Student film***

Ocotber 2012 Official Selection for the Médecins Sans Frontières – Online Film

November 2012 Mezipatra Brno and Prague, Czech Republic

November 2012 San Francisco Transgender Film Festival USA

November 2012 Interfilm -28th International Short Film Festival, Berlin, Germany

November 2012 The Anchorage International Film Festival, Alaska, USA

December 2012 Thammasat University, Bangkok, Thailand

December 2012 ChopShots International Film Festival, Jakarta, Indonesia
Selected for Short Film Competition SEA BEST SHORTS

January 2013 Doc Point Helsinki International Documentary Film Festival, Finland

February 2013 Reelout Queer Film + Video Festival, Kingston, Ontario, Canada

March 2013 Doc Festival Goethe-Institut Hanoi, Vietnam

April 2013 Ethnographic Film Festival, University of Koblenz, Germany

April 2013 Salaya International Documentary Film Festival, Putthamonthon District, Thailand

May 2013 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, USA

May 2013 TranScreen Film Festival, Amsterdam, Netherlands

May 2013 International Women’s Film Festival, Seoul, Korea

May 2013 Divergenti International Transgender Film Festival, Bologna, Italy

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