Transcript: Someone Like Me | Apr 30, 2021

ANNOUNCER:
You're listening
to a TVO podcast.

COLIN:
Welcome to
On
Docs,
the podcast
about documentaries
and the stories they tell.
I'm Colin Ellis.
NAM:
I'm Nam
Kiwanuka.
So, Colin--
COLIN:
Yo.
NAM:
--you remember the podcast--
"Do you remember?", as
if you forget--
but the podcast that we
did about the Oscars
for the best
documentary to win?
COLIN:
I think I do. It was
about a week ago, wasn't it?
NAM:
About a week ago. I
mean, in pandemic times,
a week seems like
a month.
But how do you feel
about
My Octopus Teacher
winning the Oscar?
COLIN:
Yeah. As I think
about it, you know,
I think it was probably
the least deserving
of the other
nominees.
You know, we talked about
some really good films,
and at the end
of the day,
it's about an octopus,
whereas, you know--
NAM:
Yeah.
COLIN:
--
Time
was
about, you know,
justice for people who are
locked behind bars.
Or
Mole Agent
was about, you know,
the elderly and living alone
in a retirement facility.
It seems, like, a little
strange that they would award--
NAM:
Yes!
COLIN:
--a doc about this man's
relationship with an octopus.
NAM:
Speak on it, Colin,
because, I mean--
And again, I don't want to
sound self-serving,
because I
really think
Crip Camp
should have
received the Oscars.
This is about a
revolution,
and you're going to
give the award
to a documentary
about an octopus
and the relationship this
person develops.
And don't
get me wrong.
It's beautiful,
etc, etc,
but a documentary
like
Crip Camp
doesn't come
around very often.
And it's a learning
opportunity
for so many people,
and there's so many threads
in that documentary.
I just--
I could not--
(Laughing)
Like, I couldn't understand it.
COLIN:
Yeah. Just another baffling
choice of that night's Oscars.
NAM:
Yeah.
COLIN:
It wasn't
the only one.
Speaking
of awards, Nam,
did you not
receive something recently?
NAM:
Oh, you put
me on the spot!
Well, I'm actually
nominated
for an award
through RTNDA.
I hope I got the
acronym right.
COLIN:
Yay.
NAM:
Yeah. I'm excited,
but I'm going
to be facing off
with John
Michael McGrath, local--
COLIN:
Oh.
NAM:
--well,
fellow TVO-er,
but I'm going to
sweep the leg.
No, I'm not going to
sweep the leg.
I'm really happy that
he's nominated as well.
But what documentary
are we talking about today?
COLIN:
We're looking
at
Someone Like Me,
which explores a group
of sponsors in Vancouver
supporting an
LGBTQ refugee from Uganda.
MAN 1:
I think a lot of
people come into it
thinking it's going to
be some sort of big party
and they're going
to do some fundraising,
they'll greet the
person at the airport,
and that'll be it.
MAN 2:
But shit happens.
Things fall apart.
WOMAN 1:
The group is divided,
and the way in which
we support him is divided.
MAN 3:
It's a bunch of,
like, well-to-do adults,
and, like, we can't
get our shit together.
MAN 2:
I just want to be
comfortable in my own skin,
in what I own
and with what I have,
in the friends
I have.
WOMAN 2:
Freedom can
really only be attained
when you
surround yourself
with people and places
where you feel safe.
MAN 2:
Let me tell
you one thing.
If you have everything but
you don't have freedom,
you'll never enjoy.
WOMAN 3:
Thank you.
COLIN:
In case our
listeners don't know,
about 70 countries
around the world
have laws criminalizing same-sex
relationships,
and at least nine have
laws that directly target
transgender and
gender-nonconforming people.
That's the backdrop
that Drake,
a young man who came to
Canada in the doc,
found himself when
he was in Kenya.
But when he arrives
in Vancouver,
he starts to
face other challenges.
NAM:
This documentary-- Wow.
A couple things.
My life
is kind of--
Well, the parallels
are that we came to Canada,
my family, by a
private sponsorship,
and it was a group of
people who brought us here.
And in the
documentary,
a group of people
come together
to help Drake
come to Canada.
And coming
from Uganda,
I know about the--
the so-called anti-gay laws,
and I think, sometimes,
people here think
that it's not that
big of a deal.
Oh, it's
a big deal.
A couple years ago
in Uganda,
I think in 2008--
2007, 2008--
there was a paper that
people read a lot.
It's a
tabloid paper,
kind of like
The Enquirer,
and they outed a bunch of
people in the paper,
in the newspaper, in the
capital city, Kampala.
Could you imagine waking up and
your name is in a paper?
And you might be
in the closet,
and your work
now knows,
your friends know.
And they had a law
where, you know,
if your family knows
that you're gay
and your family doesn't
tell the authorities,
your family can also
face jail time.
So, it's
very interesting,
because I think
at the core of it,
people really want
to help other people,
but then
it's a huge--
You're becoming
responsible for somebody,
and not just
their physical wellbeing
but also their
emotional wellbeing.
And when we were brought
to Canada, my gran--
There was a group of them, but
only one person lasted:
my granny.
COLIN:
Mm-hmm.
NAM:
So, I think it's--
There are a lot of different
themes in this documentary
that I found that people
can learn a lot from.
And Drake, I mean, what
a great name, right?
(Both laughing)
Coming to Canada.
COLIN:
Yes. We get into that.
We get into his story and
his whole personality,
the challenges facing
Canada's system,
and just how they pivoted
when COVID-19 hit.
Stay with us.

So, Sean and Steve,
thank you so much
for joining me today
on the podcast.
SEAN:
Thanks for having us.
STEVE:
Thank you.
SEAN:
Big fan.
COLIN:
Thank you. Thank
you. Well, I want to know
why a film about
LGBTQ asylum seekers,
first of all.
STEVE:
I think it
really started for us--
We had been talking with the
film board about an idea.
We were looking, and
we were really thinking
about stories that were in
the queer community
and how to tell a story
about the queer community
as it exists now.
And that was kind
of the basis point.
It's 2015 when
this is happening.
We're looking
around.
Trump's coming
into power.
There's a lot of anti-immigrant,
anti-refugee rhetoric
that's being
thrown around,
and I think,
on the other side,
to combat that a
little bit,
there's people who
are trying
to support groups
like Rainbow Refugee
and trying to
help the opposite
of what's being said
on the other side.
And we saw that
it's typically 10 strangers
that come together
to help support somebody,
and we thought it was a really
interesting starting point
for a story.
We started
to research.
We started to chat
with Rainbow Refugee.
We started to kind of go
to different groups
and talk to them about
what was happening,
and we realized that, yeah,
this probably would be
an interesting story
to film.
SEAN:
And for us,
I mean, like,
Rainbow Refugee has been
operating in Vancouver
for 20 years.
We've seen so many
of our friends
and so many colleagues and
acquaintances of ours do this,
like, join a
sponsorship group
to help resettle a
LGBTQ newcomer
in Vancouver and
across BC
and other parts
of Canada.
It's just one of those
things that we saw
on our social
media feed,
being like, "Okay. We, like,
have seen this forever."
And then once you
sort of--
that whole,
like, hate speech tide
happened in 2015,
it was like, "Let's
look into this,
because these people are
doing something so important
and so interesting
and so complicated."
And it's all
about community,
and it just felt like a good
starting place for a film.
COLIN:
Yeah. Rainbow
Refugee-- can you just tell us
a bit more about them, kind
of their origins
and what they do?
SEAN:
Yeah. They are run--
They were founded
by Chris Morrissey,
and she is a former
Catholic nun.
(Colin laughing)
She lived in or she was in Chile
during the
Pinochet regime
and met her
partner there
and then immigrated
to Canada.
Chris was from Canada, but
the partner wasn't,
and trying to get her partner
permanent residency status
was a nightmare.
So, Chris, you know,
started doing advocacy,
and then all these other people
starting contacting them,
I believe. And it sort of
just turned into this,
"How do we change
the Canadian system
to better support queer
people and their partners?"
And, like, this is 20
years into their process,
and they are doing
amazing work.
STEVE:
Mm-hmm.
SEAN:
When you look
around the world,
there are over 70
countries where it is--
you will be imprisoned
or perhaps killed
for your sexuality or
your gender orientation.
Like, the story that
we explore in our film
is happening everywhere,
and it is so important that
people in our community
and outside
the queer community
get involved
and help.
COLIN:
Yeah. It's remarkable.
How many countries again that
criminalize homosexuality?
And how many have the
death penalty for them?
It's, like, in
the dozens, isn't it?
SEAN:
For the death
penalty, and then--
Yeah. Like, over 70 where it
is illegal to be queer.
And it's like, you
look at--
I mean, now that we are
so deep into this process,
there's so many things we didn't
know at the beginning of this.
Like, Canada is the only
country in the world
with a refugee program that
supports and helps
queer people who are fleeing
persecution in these countries,
and then we're also one of the
only countries in the world
where private citizens
like you and me and Steve,
we could form
a group and say,
"We're going
to raise the money.
This person needs help.
We're going to help them
get here and build a new life."
It is, like-- I mean,
this is, like, a unique--
Canadians should be
proud of this.
STEVE:
Yeah.
COLIN:
(Laughing) Yeah.
I'm curious why Canada--
how we ended up starting
something like this.
SEAN:
I think it started
with the Vietnamese boat
people crisis.
That's, I think, what
Chris Morrissey told us.
So it's been
a long evolution.
It's hasn't always
been like this.
STEVE:
Yeah.
SEAN:
But, I mean, if you--
You would be
surprised,
you yourself
and your listeners,
how many people in your
community have done this.
It's not just a
queer thing.
There are people all across
the country who do this
for all sorts of
refugees.
STEVE:
Wasn't Jason Kenney
at one point, like,
an integral part of this?
SEAN:
Yeah.
STEVE:
Which is the
strangest thing. (Laughing)
SEAN:
Like, with
Rainbow Refugee, a lot of--
COLIN:
Yeah, and I
remember John Baird, even,
was very strongly supportive
of bringing LGBT refugees,
I think from
Iran especially.
But yeah.
It came as a surprise to
me, learning that,
and I want to talk more about
Rainbow Refugee Society.
So, they have this,
I guess,
circle of support
for refugees
that they're, I guess,
going to sponsor.
Can you talk just a
bit on how this works?
And what is it they
do to help the refugees?
Or the newcomers,
I guess I should say.
STEVE:
Yeah. Basically, people
will contact Rainbow Refugee
and say, "I'm interested in
helping. How can I help?"
And they'll ask if
you want to join a group,
and then they will match you up
with up to 10 other people.
And from there,
they will kind
of give you guidance.
They will tell you what
you're about to embark on
and how you're going to do
what you're about to do,
and then they'll help
guide the process.
It's all, like, a volunteer
organization. It is grassroots.
It is just people who are
coming together to try to help.
COLIN:
Got you.
And you know,
they're choosing,
you know,
from, I guess,
like, I don't know
how many refugees
or newcomers.
And obviously, it comes down
to a choice, right?
And I guess I
wonder, for them,
how difficult was it for
them to choose someone
out of, you know, so
many applicants, right?
SEAN:
That's lots of
interesting things
with our film. I mean,
A, we should say,
with the
specific group--
the group of 11 people
who we feature,
who come together to
sponsor Drake,
the newcomer-- they--
In some cases, the people
know each other beforehand.
In this case, they didn't
know each other at all.
It was
11 strangers.
In the nature of this, we
wanted to stay true
to how Rainbow Refugee
does this process,
so we didn't even know who
it was going to be
until two weeks before
we started shooting.
We met a few of them.
Some of them, we didn't,
and that first meeting scene
in the film that you see
where they all come together
as a group for the first time--
we were already in that
room with cameras.
They walked in. That
was the first time
they all
met each other.
Like, this is
a true--
You are watching this unfold
on the characters' terms
as it's
happening. Yeah.
And then with the
newcomer,
we also
didn't know--
It's randomly
selected by the UN,
the United Nations
Human Rights Commission,
so it is--
Like, we didn't know
where in the world
this person was
going to come from,
if it was going
to be Russia,
if it was going to be the
Middle East, Indonesia,
Brazil,
the Caribbean.
We didn't know what
their gender would be,
what their sexual
orientation would be.
Like, this whole
process is,
like, you're watching
this all unfold,
surprise
after surprise.
We didn't know if they
would film with us.
We couldn't ask
them for consent.
COLIN:
Mm.
STEVE:
This is us just
scrambling the whole time.
SEAN:
No one does
documentaries like this.
Like, this
is, like, madness.
You didn't
know anyone,
and you didn't know what
you're going to film.
It was
just-- Yeah.
COLIN:
Did you kind of
have a backup plan
in case the person ended up
not wanting to be in the film?
STEVE:
Yeah. We
had set it up
so we were filming
with everybody in the group.
So, we were filming quite
extensively around it,
and we were going to really
focus on their lives
and what was
happening.
And then their sponsorship
was just kind of a part of it.
We were really lucky, because
Drake had already been
doing podcasts and a lot of
advocacy work in Nairobi,
and when he saw
what we were doing,
it was pretty quick
when he was like,
"Yeah, I want to
participate and help out."
He said to us--
He's like,
"If this can help someone
like me back in Africa,
then it's worth it."
So we were
pretty lucky.
COLIN:
I love Drake.
I have to know
more about--
I think our audience needs
to know more about him.
Just tell us a little bit
about his background,
where he's from.
And what's he like?
You know, he's
a really cool guy.
STEVE:
Yeah. He's from
Uganda originally.
He left home
at an early age
and made his way
to Kenya,
and yeah.
I mean,
he's young.
He's full of
life. (Laughing)
SEAN:
He has a fashion degree
from when he was in Uganda
before he left to
claim asylum in Kenya,
and he is, like,
literally--
He's fun-loving.
He is, like--
walks in the room,
and he is the centre of
attention everywhere he goes.
(Steve, Colin laughing)
He is...
STEVE:
Yeah. He has this
really funny thing.
We always said that
he kind of speaks
in, like,
Instagram quotes.
He's always just, like-- He
has these, like, little things
that he just keeps on saying,
and they stick with you forever,
because they're in
your brain.
Drake's awesome.
COLIN:
Yeah. Very
much a Gen Z-er.
STEVE:
For sure. For sure.
(Sean laughing)
DRAKE:
I'm so, so, so glad
for you guys loving me.
I know I'm just--
It's been a month now since
I came into your life,
but I'm happy
that I'm in your life.
(People speaking
indistinctly)
WOMAN:
And a happy Christmas.
(Glasses clinking)
COLIN:
Well, you
know, I mean,
he's obviously, like,
a delight to be around,
but you know, he's
coming from a country
that I think, you know,
has criminalized homosexuality
and been very outspoken
in its hostility
towards
LGBT folks.
So I'm just wondering
what it was like for him
to, I guess, go
from that
to settling
in Vancouver.
And also, you know,
did he talk about
his experiences back home
that you're
able to share?
STEVE:
He spoke
a little bit.
I think one of the things that
really made me, like,
understand what
type of person he is
is, Drake said to us
he's never been in the closet.
So he's always
been out.
He's always
been himself,
and it is
always just--
Drake is Drake,
and I found that, like,
especially inspiring,
because, like,
it's crazy.
Like, it's crazy to have
that sort of power.
SEAN:
And then you also
see in the film, too,
I mean,
it's, like--
There's a
line from Michael,
who is with
Rainbow Refugee,
where he just says a lot of
people get into this
thinking it's going to
be like, "Oh, I get to meet
a whole new group of
people. We're going to be
the best of friends.
It's going to be a party.
We're going to do all
these fundraisers.
It's fun, fun, fun."
And then as you see
in the film,
I mean, Drake
arrives,
and everyone's
preconceived ideas
of what this was
going to be--
It was not what they
were expecting,
and it actually caused a lot
of conflict with the sponsors.
And it is, like,
a moment in the film
that surprised
even us.
COLIN:
It surprised me,
too, but I guess I wondered
how much
of it was--
because I thought maybe he would
be dealing with some trauma,
but it
seems like he's--
You know, he's a young guy,
and he wants to have some fun.
And I think a lot of the
people in the circle
are a little bit older.
Maybe they're a little more--
(Chuckling) --like
me at this age.
You know, they want to just kind
of settle down at night
and not
necessarily party.
But yeah. Can you talk just
a bit about the conflicts
that sort of erupted between
the circle and, I guess, Drake?
SEAN:
I think this is
something, I mean,
we learned, too, is,
like, different cultures
have different ways
of celebrating things.
So, I mean,
he-- Like, literally,
if you've been living
in the closet in a country
where you cannot be
yourself for 24 years
and you're going to show up
in a country like Canada,
where you can be
openly queer,
you can drink,
you can smoke
cannabis--
This is all
legal things,
and why wouldn't
you, you know?
STEVE:
It's your new life,
and you're going to, like--
you're going to have
some fun, right?
Like, this is new,
so I think that's--
I don't know.
Like, it was--
I think when you go
back to the group
and you just think of the
different value systems
that everybody bring to
the conversation--
And sometimes,
they're opposing,
and sometimes,
there's conflict.
SEAN:
This was a
opening for us here.
It's like, sometimes, you
think of the queer community,
"Oh, my God. Everyone's
so left-wing and so accepting,
and it's, like,
one big, monolithic,
progressive block
of people."
No. It's very
different.
There's a lot of layers
within the queer community,
and people feel very differently
about different things.
It's also like--
To be honest,
too, it's like,
we had cameras there
for that, right?
Like, it is an additional
level of stress
in an already
stressful situation
for everyone who's
a bunch of volunteers.
And yeah.
STEVE:
Yeah. I mean, like, for
anyone who's done group work
and you're going to do
it with 12 people
who are complete
strangers,
it's like, you know you're
not going to get along
with everybody.
(Sean, Steve laughing)
COLIN:
Well, and some
people can't handle it, right?
Some people are just
like, "Nope. Not for me."
STEVE:
For sure, yeah,
and I mean, like,
respect, right?
Like, you came in,
and it didn't work
for you.
It's fine, but,
like, in the end,
it's been a
success.
Drake is here
now. He's safe.
He's living
his life,
and everything that they did
to get him here is valid.
And, like, I'm proud
that everybody did this.
COLIN:
Mm-hmm. Well, it's not
all great for him, though.
I mean, when he
arrives,
he's dealing with
racism for, I guess,
probably the first
time in his life, too.
I mean, even though he's able
to be open sexually,
you know, skin colour
prejudice is still something
that would be, I
guess, new to him,
since he's coming
from a country
that was majority
black, right?
How does he, I
guess, handle that?
How does he sort of, I
guess, process all that?
STEVE:
I don't know. It
was a moment in time
when we were all--
like, we were with him,
and it was--
I don't know.
It was really shitty
to see,
and it was shitty to see
that this was the experience
that he
was having.
SEAN:
And, like,
all Steve and I--
Granted, yes, we
were making the film.
We spent a lot of
time with Drake
and all of the
subjects in this film
outside of--
with no cameras.
I mean, it's impossible not
to become close to everyone--
Like, we were filming
continuously over 15 months,
and for Drake
especially,
it's, like, Steve and I
just would show up.
This is, like, really one of
the things you can do,
especially when someone is
going through trauma
or, like, trying
to start a new life
and they
need support.
It's like, show
up without judgment.
Create space for them to talk
about their experiences.
Honour those experiences
and their words.
That's what we tried
to do with Drake.
It's what we tried to do
with everyone in this film.
STEVE:
Yeah.
DRAKE:
But I'm so scared about my
life and my skin and everything,
because it
has happened to me,
and it was so...
Couldn't sleep.
Couldn't open
my window at first.
I was just scared
to walk this direction.
I was so scared to walk
different direction.
But I think
the life we're
living in,
life has never
been fair,
so it will
eventually pass.
Yeah.
COLIN:
Well, I want to
go back to Canada
and just the fact that,
you know, we're a country
that, you know, is probably
the only one that does
specifically single or
invite LGBTQ asylum seekers.
And it strikes me
as interesting
that we're the only country
that still does this
and that other
countries haven't tried
to adopt
the same policy.
I'm wondering what you
think of that.
SEAN:
I think there's-- Well,
A, we wanted to do this movie
knowing that with the
National Film Board
and how they
distribute films
and how they get it
out in front of audiences,
not just in Canada
but around the world--
This is part of the reason why
we wanted to do this,
because I think
there's a lot
that other countries can learn
from what we're doing here.
COLIN:
Mm-hmm.
SEAN:
And I know the US has
had a program similar to this
on and off. It just
depends who's president
and what's happening
in the country.
And there are
countries in Europe
who do accept
queer refugees,
but it's not as targeted
or as expansive as Canada.
And we hear things from time to
time from Rainbow Refugee.
Like, Chile is
studying our system
and considering adopting
something similar,
so, like, change
is coming.
STEVE:
Mm-hmm.
SEAN:
And it's just--
I'm glad it's coming
from Canada, and I hope--
And it's not to say that our
system is perfect, either.
I mean, the film
does point that out,
and there's still lots
of room for improvement,
but it is really helping queer
people who are in danger.
STEVE:
In danger.
SEAN:
Danger.
STEVE:
Yeah.
COLIN:
Well, what do you
think needs to change
about our system?
STEVE:
The weird thing is,
talking to Kay,
they were unsure
of how the pandemic
and not being about
to do in-person hearings
was going to affect the
whole situation.
And since, they've all
moved to online now.
And because they've
moved to online,
they're actually able to
do more hearings.
SEAN:
Immigration hearings.
STEVE:
Immigration
hearings, yeah.
So it's actually, like,
increased the amount of people
that can actually
have access to this.
So there are things that
are changing,
but from our
position,
it's so
complicated.
I'm not even sure if I
can give a response to you how.
SEAN:
I think, like, a
broader societal thing, though,
is, like, I hope
people watch this film
and definitely have a
greater sense of empathy
for asylum-seekers--
STEVE:
Mm-hmm.
SEAN:
--for immigrants,
for refugees.
I mean, part of the change
that you want to see
in your country
starts with everybody.
You say, "This is
program is of value.
We should support it,
fine-tune, it,
make sure that it's the
best that it can be."
That starts with you
and I and...
STEVE:
That was a
good answer.
(Sean, Steve,
Colin laughing)
SEAN:
Thank you.
(Sean, Steve,
Colin laughing)
COLIN:
I think you had a
good answer, too, Steve.
Well, I would say--
You mentioned COVID
a minute ago,
and, you know, obviously, that
has affected everyone
working in the film industry and
the documentary industry.
I wonder how it
affected, you know,
the story that you
were trying to make.
STEVE:
Yeah. We
were, like--
I mean, we had--
Our whole goal was to
set out to film
the life
of these people
over the course
of 12 months,
and-- I
don't know--
six months into it,
seven months into it,
a pandemic happened.
We were like, "Oh, my God.
What are we going to do?" And--
SEAN:
"We are never going to
finish the film. Never."
(Steve, Colin laughing)
"It's going to go on forever."
(Steve laughing)
STEVE:
And so, we
were really, like--
We were just throwing a lot
of ideas back and forth,
and we were like,
"How do we do this?
How do we just
continue on filming?"
And the idea of
getting an iPhone
and delivering it to each
of the subjects' homes
and giving them
a list of questions
and ideas of, like, scenes
that they could shoot
came to us, so we
started to do that.
And we would drop the phones off
and pick it up after a week,
and it was always such
just, like--
It was like getting
a treasure box, right,
because you didn't
know what was on the phone.
You'd start to go
through the footage,
and it was, like,
super cute.
And it's, like, super
intimate footage.
SEAN:
They're
framing themself.
They're showing
you exactly--
Like, they're building--
like, putting glasses
in the frame, and it's
exactly, like, their view.
STEVE:
Your Drake
story is good.
SEAN:
Oh. Drake-- Oh.
Like, I mean, we were
so close to Drake by then,
but you still have
no idea.
Like, most of the COVID
stuff that he filmed for us
was done between, like, midnight
and 4:00 in the morning,
and he is a
total night owl.
STEVE:
And that's when all of his
friends are awake in Uganda,
so that's, like, when
he's awake.
COLIN:
Right. Oh, okay.
STEVE:
Right? Like,
you just learn
all of these small,
little things
about these people,
and you're like,
"This is so
interesting."
COLIN:
Well, I was just
going to say, do you think
it maybe
gave them--
they were more comfortable
being themselves
without a camera
crew around?
You know? Like,
obviously,
you grew close with them,
but there's something different,
I think, when you have
the ability to film yourself.
Maybe you feel like you
can share more.
STEVE:
Well, that's
exactly it, right?
Like, everybody
is so used to phones.
We record all of
our lives.
We take photos of
everything,
and so you give
them a phone,
and it just creates
that level of intimacy
that you can't
get with a camera crew.
SEAN:
Steve, like, I
mean, there's stuff
I wish we could have
included in the film, but--
like, Emily,
who's Kay's partner,
walking around their house
with the cat in Emily's arms,
and she's just singing to the
cat and serenading the cat.
Like, there's all these, like--
(Colin laughing)
And Kay's chasing
her around with the phone.
Like, there's so
many good moments.
Like, it's priceless.
(Colin laughing)
COLIN:
Well, I have to ask
how Drake's doing today.
STEVE:
Drake's doing well.
He's working. He's dating.
He's living
his life.
He's kind of a frontline
worker, I guess,
so he was vaccinated
fairly early.
SEAN:
He's working in
the downtown east side
in Vancouver...
for-- I'm not sure
which branch of Atira,
but he's doing
good community work
and supporting the people down
in the downtown east side.
STEVE:
Mm-hmm.
SEAN:
And I mean, he
came here wanting
to pursue
fashion and film,
and he is--
STEVE:
On his way.
SEAN:
--following his dream.
STEVE:
Right? Yeah.
COLIN:
That's great. Did Drake--
(Laughing) He came
to the country
with probably the most
internationally famous Drake
on the planet.
(Sean, Steve laughing)
Did he ever
kind of, like--
Did he know
about Drake back home?
It was something
that just I was thinking.
I know it's
silly to ask,
but that was something I was
thinking about the whole time,
was, he shares a name
with the most famous guy
named Drake ever.
STEVE:
In Canada.
Yeah. No, he does--
COLIN:
Yeah, exactly.
STEVE:
I mean, one of the things
that completely surprised me--
And, like, this is
just, like, my own stereotypes
with what I think
a refugee is,
is, like, when we were-- when
Drake had first come over,
we're driving around with
him in the city,
and we're all singing
the same songs.
Like, he loves
Sam Smith,
and he's just wailing
in the backseat.
And we all watch the-- like, we
watch the same TV shows.
So, like, you realize that the
internet has just made us, like,
much more closer than you even
can begin to understand.
SEAN:
And then he would be
watching
Ru Paul's Drag Race
with his friends--
STEVE:
Yeah.
SEAN:
--in Kenya. Like,
you know, it's like,
the world is a smaller
place nowadays for sure.
STEVE:
Yeah, for sure.
COLIN:
Do you think
he'll ever go back home?
STEVE:
I'm not sure. I
think he wants to.
I know, like, he says in the
film that, like he loves Uganda
and he'll always
be Ugandan.
And I think that he probably
has dreams to go back.
And yeah.
COLIN:
Well, we have to
wrap up our conversations,
but is there anything else
you can tell us
about the work that you
guys are doing?
Is there any other projects
that you're working on?
Anything you'd like
to plug?
STEVE:
Sure. (Laughing)
I would love to.
(Steve, Sean, Colin laughing)
SEAN:
Do you want
to plug second?
COLIN:
Please do.
SEAN:
And I'll say one
thing about the film.
STEVE:
You do it. You do it.
SEAN:
One thing-- I know
that we've been talking,
and there's, like,
another emotional layer
to the film that we just want
to, you know, encourage people--
This is, like,
a serious issue,
and it rightfully
so is a--
And, like, a lot of
our talk with you
has been about the
serious issues.
This is about
the queer community.
What was important to Steve
and I with this is, like,
sort of the way that we process
trauma is through humour,
and you'll
see this in the--
Like, our closeness
with the subjects
in being able to
do this over 15 months
is that they got
so comfortable with us
and so comfortable
with the camera,
there is--
It is a
serious film,
but there is an
undercurrent of humour
that runs through
everything.
And this was important
to us as filmmakers,
is to find that
balance so it is--
you have some
emotional--
STEVE:
Mm-hmm. Balance. Yeah.
SEAN:
--room and
balance and tension and--
STEVE:
Yeah.
SEAN:
Yeah.
STEVE:
For sure.
SEAN:
And that's what I
want to say about that.
So, there are some laughs in
this film, and there--
COLIN:
Thank you. Yeah.
(Steve laughing)
SEAN:
Your plug. What
are you going to plug?
STEVE:
We have another
feature film documentary
in development right now
with CBC doc channel,
and it is kind of tracing
back the Satanic panic
from where it
is now
and how it kind of exists in
this crazy QAnon world
back to a--
SEAN:
1980s. So,
it's four decades,
and the film is called
Satan Wants You.
So, it'll be a little
different than this one.
STEVE:
Yeah. But
we're looking forward.
We're hoping to close
funding in summer
and start shooting in the fall,
as long as everything goes--
COLIN:
I'm looking forward
to watching that. Yeah.
Definitely let us know, because
I'd love to watch it. Yeah.
SEAN:
Alright.
COLIN:
Well, Sean and
Steve, thank you so much
for joining
me today.
STEVE:
Thanks for having us.
We really appreciate it.
SEAN:
This was so
much fun. Thank you.
(Music playing)
COLIN:
And that's
the podcast.
Someone Like Me
is playing at Hot Docs
and will be streaming online
in the future.
NAM:
And while you're here,
why not give us a rating
on Apple Podcasts and
tell a friend about us?
It helps new listeners
to find the show.
COLIN:
You can follow me on
Twitter @colinellis81.
NAM:
And you can follow me
@namshine, all one word.
COLIN:
Thanks to producer
and editor Matthew O'Mara,
senior producer Katie O'Connor,
production support
coordinators
Nikki Ashworth
and Jonathan Halliwell,
and executive
producer Laurie Few.
NAM:
Thanks for
listening, and we'll
catch you at
the next screening.

Watch: Someone Like Me