A Tearful Journey of a Lesbian Coach with her Women`s Football Team from a small province of Cambodia
Ms. Van Sovan, 56, is a lesbian working in the Department of Youth, Sport and Education and has been in charge of the provincial youth sport as a football coach in Cambodia, for the past seven years. Since she was a young girl, she has always had an extraordinary passion for football. However, football was one of many sports and entertainments that were completely banned by the Khmer Rouge (1975-1979), especially for young women. Throughout 2011 and 2013, Sovan created a Lesbian Football team, one and only of its kind in the country. In spite of their talents, hard training and multiple victories, however, the team struggles with limited financial resources as well as social, cultural prejudices, verbal abuses, public humiliations and discriminations against the lesbian footballers. The spring of 2016, the team has come in the third place in their home province and is qualified to compete in the national championship league which is scheduled to take place in Phnom Penh, the capital city of Cambodia in October this year… The biggest challenges and fear, however, they do not have sufficient fund to transport or accommodate all the competent players throughout the championship in Phnom Penh…
Director Vanna Hem, born in Kampong Chnnang, Cambodia, received a Bachelors degree in Business Administration in 2006. Upon graduating, he went through basic documentary filmmaking training at META house, German Cultural Centre Phnom Penh and Goethe Institute. Having been inspired by compelling issues and stories of human rights, human trafficking, sex workers, the disabled and LGBTs in his impoverished home country of Cambodia, Vanna Hem is today one of the most celebrated, young documentary filmmakers in Cambodia, and is totally dedicated to dissemination and raising awareness for the marginalised people of Cambodia through his various award-winning short documentary films. His previous works include among others Too Late to Change (2012), Two Lives One Heart (2012), Where is the Horizon (2013) and Lives Under the Red Light (2014). He currently lives in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
A Korean-American / Norwegian with the Masters in Business Administration, Mary Katherine Olsen spent most of her younger days as an economic journalists and PR / marketing manager in America, Asia and Europe, till she started applying her journalistic and management skills into film distribution, investment and production in 2004. Founder and managing director of MKI MEDIA AS Korea & Norway and inspired by Korea´s most celebrated and respected documentary film directors, Ms. Olsen today is dedicated to films, both feature and documentary, of compelling stories focusing on socio-economic, political justice and basic human rights violations around the world. Her previous works among others include 63 Years On (By Dongwon Kim, Korea, 2008), Women in 40s TV Series (Singapore, 2011), Total Brokenness (Cambodia, 2012) and Beautiful Mind (By EinarClevland, Norway, 2014). She is currently working on Spy Nation (By Choi Seungho, Korea, 2016) as the film`s Script Consultant.