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Gay Bosnian film spurs death threats

Gay Bosnian film spurs death threats

A film set during the Bosnian war of 1992-1995 and focusing on a gay male couple has led to death threats against the director and vehement condemnations, mostly from people who have not seen the film, the BBC reports. The movie, titled Go West, has not been released and is shown only in highly secretive screenings. "We like to joke that it's a film about Romeo and Romeo--without the Juliet," the film's producer, Samir Smajic, told the BBC. "But we hope the film will encourage people to be more tolerant. It's a film which shows humanity and has warmth inside." The Romeo and Romeo in Go West are a Muslim man and a Serb who are attempting to escape Bosnia in 1992 at the beginning of the war between Serbians, who are generally Christians, and the mostly Muslim Bosnians over control of their country. "The film mixes up the issues of nationality and homosexuality, and that is wrong," a Sarajevo magazine editor told the BBC. "It belittles the real issues at stake during the conflict." "Homosexuality is something that has always been hidden in this society," Svetlana Djurkovic, who heads a gay and lesbian rights group in Sarajevo, said to the BBC. "We're fully behind the film and think the director has a lot of courage to go through with it." The film's director, Ahmed Imamovic, won the 2002 European Film Academy award for a short film. He hopes to screen Go West at the Cannes Film Festival in May.

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