Stéphane Olijnyk - Fiction - 35'- 2021
In Abidjan, a gay, muslim young man called Ali half heartedly attends his lover Saint’s christian wedding. Ali tries to put on a brave face but another guest, Maël, an import-export executive, soon figures out the nature of the two men’s relationship. Following the event, Ali becomes a target for Maël’s sexual blackmail…
13th KASHISH MUMBAI INTERNATIONAL QUEER FILM FESTIVAL (2022) dans le programme “MATTERS OF HEART”
35th CONNECTICUT’S LGBTQ FILM FESTIVAL (2022) dans le programme “AWAY WE GO : INTERNATIONAL SHORTS I
43th DURBAN INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL – DIFF (2022)
CHARLOTTE FILM FESTIVAL (2022) “Narrative feature”
Honorable mention : narrative features
BRUSSELS SHORT FILM FESTIVAL (2023)
A pretty good “LGBTQIA+ fiction” (as the channel labelled it, damn), tebse enough to entertain while more interesting than what they usually manage to be when they’re focused on the characters’s Sexualität. Review by Rei Ayanami
Depiction of the limited way to cure of being queer in the conservative family is by getting masked marriage. Review by jimthen
Chameleon: The blurred line between safety and authenticity
CHAMELEON (Change-couleur) (2021) is a 35-minute short fiction film by Stéphane Olijnyk, a French director and screenwriter. In French with English subtitles, it was shot in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire and it is one of the very few LGBTQIA+ fictions shot in West Africa, where most of the countries have laws that criminalize homosexuality.
Change-couleur opens with an erotic scene between two black men in close-upshot, but this moment of intimacy is immediately cut off with a warning of the risk that comes with such a relationship. Through their conversation, the viewer understands that outside of this room, there is a different world that neither understands them nor accepts them, so they have to find ways to blend in, like chameleons.
Saint (Cédric Djédjé) chooses to seal every suspicion regarding his gay agenda with a heterosexual marriage, and Ali (Franck O’Neil Servain) Saint wife’s nephew is compelled to attend and dance at his wedding. After a traditional dance performance, Ali comes in voguing, gazing into the eye of his secret lover, and the moment is intensified with the music and reddish intimate lightning. He gets noticed by Saint’s invitee in the audience, Maël, who lives in Paris and does import-export like Saint. This encounter would led to Ali’s ousting.