Mr. Gay Syria

Mr Gay Syria
dir.Ayse Toprak/Turkey, France, Germany/2017/84 min

Set in Istanbul and Berlin, Mr. Gay Syria follows two gay refugees as they try to rebuild their lives after fleeing the war in Syria. Husein is a 24-year-old barber who escaped to Istanbul with his parents and pregnant wife. Mahmoud is the founder of Syria’s LGBTI movement and a refugee in Germany. He works part time at a NGO helping gay asylum seekers.

What brings them together is a crazy dream: joining the international beauty contest called Mr. Gay World, hosted in Malta. If they manage, it will be the first time an Arab man from the Middle East attends such a public event. For Husein, this is a potential escape to Europe. He yearns to live in a society that accepts him. For Mahmoud, as a gay rights defender, this is the place to generate visibility and launch a campaign for Syrian gay refugees.

While Mr. Gay Syria follows the journey of the two characters and their friends, the beauty contest becomes a thread that weaves together the difficulties of being gay in homophobic societies, the challenges of coming out, the joy of falling in love and the devastating migration crisis.


  • projection time:
    84 min
  • country/year:
    Turkey, France, Germany/2017
  • director:
  • pictures:
    Hajo Schomerus, Anne Misselwitz
  • production:
    Les Filmes d'Antoine, Toprak Film, Coin Film
  • selected festivals and awards:
    2017 – IDFA Amsterdam, 2017 – Sheffield Doc/Fest, 2017 – Paris Gay and Lesbian FF: Grand Prix Documentary

Other movies on this section

Heroes Are Among Us

Holy Mountain
Love means zero
The Quest of Alain Ducasse
Other movies on this tags

# human rights

Ex Shaman
A Year of Hope
I Can Come to You in Your dreams
Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist
Doc shop
Buy our films on DVD
Sign up and stay up to date