Malaysia’s leading human rights film festival, FreedomFilmFest (FFF), is back with a diverse selection of hard-hitting and courageous documentaries.

Since 2003, the FFF has provided a platform for filmmakers and human rights activists to showcase films that tell stories of lesser-known human rights issues.

This year, the festival will be held from Sept 2 to Sept 9 in Petaling Jaya, Selangor, and will feature a lineup of 40 films that cover some of the most prominent issues of our time.

Among the films being featured are internationally-acclaimed documentary Sunday Beauty Queens by Filipino director Baby Ruth Villarama, Ada For Mayor by Spanish director Pau Faus, and An Insignificant Man by Indian filmmakers Khushboo Ranka and Vinay Shukla.

The week-long festival will focus its attention on the UN Declaration of Human Rights and in particular, the recognition that “all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights”.

Besides the films, festival-goers will also have the opportunity to get up close and personal with the filmmakers, participate in interactive workshops, talks, food-tasting events and enjoy musical performances.

Another new addition to the usual programme is content from Malaysia’s newly- formed Freedom Film Network (FFN). Two winners from this year’s FreedomFilmFest Grant will be featured, and the films cover a diverse range of issues, from rapid development and its impact on flora and fauna in Penang (The Hills And The Sea), the plights of Rohingya refugees in Malaysia (Selfie With The Prime Minister), and the consequences of unilateral conversion (Diary For Prasana).

For the full festival schedule, visit freedomfilm.my. Register to be a Friend of the Festival to secure your screening passes. Festival passes are available on the website or from the venue on the day of the screening.

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The Hills And The Sea covers the issue of rapid development and its impact on flora and fauna in Penang.