9 Nov 2019 19:54

Tblisi police arrest 11 radical protestors against film about gay dancers

TBILISI. Nov 9 (Interfax) - A crowd of radically minded citizens gathered outside the Amirani cinema in Tbilisi on Friday to protest against the screening of a French-Swedish-Georgian film about love between two gay members of the Georgian National Dance Ensemble.

Eleven protestors were detained for disobeying police orders, the police said on Friday evening. Several people were injured, including the LGBT campaigner Anna Subeliani, who suffered an eyebrow bruise after one radical threw a stone. The assailant was identified and apprehended, the police said.

The film "And then we danced" premiered on November 8 at Amirani and three other movie theaters in the Georgian capital.

Sandro Bregadze, a protest co-organizer and leader of the Georgian March group, told reporters that he and his supporters will not allow "propaganda of homosexuality in Georgia."

The film was shown at the Cannes festival where it received positive reviews, the Georgian media said. The Swedish side has nominated it for Oscar.

Some Georgian experts think the film to be quite mediocre, seeking "free and quite an effective" publicity ahead of its viewing by the Oscar jury. In Georgia the film is opposed not only by radicals but also by the official Orthodox Church which urged believers not to watch "this heresy."