Leitis in Waiting
Play Trailer

Leitis in Waiting

Wed Feb 27 6:30 PM
Selling Fast

Event Cinemas George St
General Admission
Unclassified 15+
71 Mins

You've heard of ladies in waiting, but have you heard of leitis in waiting? In Tonga, the smallest kingdom in the world, these indigenous transgender women have traditionally played a central role in society as attendants to the royal family. However, a recent influx of foreign evangelism has seen a rise in discrimination in this conservative island paradise. 

Joey Joleen Mataele, a leiti of noble blood who founded the Tonga Leitis Association is leading the fight for equal rights. She’s a quiet force to be reckoned with; hosting the joyful and hilarious Miss Galaxy Queen beauty pageant, challenging the homophobic preachings of a US-backed Tongan televangelist, and addressing a United Nations panel on LGBTIQ rights. 

From the team that produced audience fave Kumu Hina (MGFF15), this fascinating documentary is a rare glimpse into the culture of leitis (“ladies”) and their struggle for respect. 

Sydney Premiere

"Leitis in Waiting is a true gift to the world - mesmerizing and unflinching" - Jeannette Hereniko, President, Network for the Promotion of Asian Pacific Cinema

Join Us! For a Q&A with documentary subject Joey Joleen Mataele

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