There’s been an absolute tsunami of DragCon posts on the WOW Report lately, so you are forgiven if you missed the news that WOW’s documentary won Out of Iraq Daytime Creative Arts Emmy Friday night! We want to extend our heartiest condragulations to the directors Chris McKim and Eve Orner, co-producers Randy Barbato and Fenton Bailey, the entire production team, and of course the the star-crossed lovers themselves, Nayyef and Btoo.
The documentary follows two young soldiers who fall in love in Iraq, and risk being separated when Nayyef receives a US visa to work as a translator and Btoo is left behind with his family growing increasingly suspicious at his long-distance phone calls.
Says director Chris McKim to the Guardian:
“So much of the story had to be told through their personal archive of photos and videos which we were blessed to have because it told their relationship in very dangerous times – the challenge was to find a way to use, what could’ve been very generic, footage and make it feel like a first-hand experience.
“But Nayyed and Btoo are such good storytellers that they helped guide the way with their memories.”
McKim said he found himself surprised by how much he was able to relate to Nayyef’s struggle with coming out – despite coming from very different backgrounds.
He said: “Nayyef’s experience of growing up in the Saddam years, homosexuality was frowned on and illegal, but it wasn’t quite as dangerous where he was living as a more religious area may have been at that particular time.
“So a lot of his stories I was surprised to identify with, growing up in rural Pennsylvania, in pre-Internet age, watching TV and having crushes, growing up and wanting to go to a big city to find my people.
You can watch the full documentary at LOGOonline.