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a documentary by Pallavi Somusetty

At the heart of ESCAPING AGRA is an exploration of the idea that gender and sexual orientation can be “fundamental to the right of self-determination, dignity and freedom of individuals”.


In Escaping Agra, a documentary by Pallavi Somusetty, college student Naveen Bhat chronicles their experience of being illegally detained in Agra, India after their gender and sexual orientation are discovered. As Naveen battles their parents in and out of court, they find support from the Indian Supreme Court's recognition of a third gender. The 23-minute film follows Naveen’s journey home to California as they piece their life back together.


Please note: Naveen, whose gender is non-binary, uses they/them pronouns.


In 2017, Escaping Agra was awarded the CAAMFest AT&T award, the Spotlight Documentary Film Gold award, and Transcreen Short Film Audience Award.


TranScreen Film Festival Encore, Nijmegen Netherlands June 2 2018 | Queerly Beloved, London UK April 23 2018International Queer and Migrant Film Festival, Amsterdam Netherlands Dec 9 2017 | Vinokino LGBT Film Festival, Helsinki Finland Nov 12 2017 | Q Cinema, Fort Worth TX Nov 2 2017 | South Asian Film Festival of Montreal, QC Canada (director q&a) Oct 28 2017 | Vinokino LGBT Film Festival, Turku, Finland Oct 22 2017 | Hamburg International Queer Film Festival, Germany Oct 21 2017 | Way OUT West Film Fest, Albuquerque NM Oct 15 2017 | Tampa Bay International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival, Tampa Bay FL Oct 14 2017 | Eau Queer Film Festival, Eau Claire WI Oct 12 2017 | Tasveer South Asian Film Festival, Seattle WA Oct 9 2017 | Out on Film: Atlanta's LGBT Film Festival, Atlanta GA Sept 30 2017 | Fresno Reel Pride LGBTQ+ Film Festival, Fresno CA Sept 23 2017 | TranScreen Film Festival, Amsterdam Netherlands Sept 15 2017 | Stamped | Pensacola LGBT Film Festival, Pensacola FL Sept 15 2017 | Faroe Islands’ International Minority Film Festival, Faroe Islands Sept 8 2017 | Austin Gay + Lesbian International Film Festival, Austin TX Sept 8 2017 | Indian Film Festival Stuttgart, Germany July 22 2017 | Asian Film Festival, Dallas TX July 17 2017 | SPARK - A Trans Arts Festival, Manchester UK July 4 2017 | Cycles of Change Community Screening, Oakland CA June 30 2017 | Berkeley Public Library Community Screening, Berkeley CA (director q&a) June 27 2017 | Female Eye Film Festival, Toronto ON Canada June 20 2017 | Frameline San Francisco International LGBTQ Film Festival, San Francisco CA (director q&a) June 18 2017 | De Anza College Pride Month Screening, Cupertino, CA (director q&a) June 6 2017 | KASHISH Mumbai International Queer Film Festival, Mumbai, India May 25 2017 | Davis Feminist Film Festival, Davis CA May 12 2017 | Translations: Seattle Transgender Film Festival, Seattle WA May 7 2017 | NYC Independent Film Festival, New York City NY May 6 2017 | New York Indian Film Festival, New York City NY (director q&a) May 6 2017 | Queer Hippo International LGBT Film Festival, Houston TX April 29 2017 | Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, Los Angeles CA April 29 2017 | Wicked Queer: The Boston LGBT Film Festival, Boston MA April 8 2017 | BFI Flare London LGBT Film Festival, London UK March 25-26 2017 | CAAMFest (Celebrating Asian American Film), San Francisco CA (director q&a) March 11 2017 | POWFest (Portland Oregon Women's Film Festival), Portland OR March 4 2017 | Outfest Fusion LGBT People of Color Film Festival, Los Angeles CA (director q&a) March 3 2017 | Smita Patil Documentary & Short Film Festival, Pune India Dec 10 2016 | Vancouver International South Asian Film Festival, Vancouver BC Canada Nov 26 2016 | 3rd i San Francisco International South Asian Film Festival, San Francisco CA (director q&a) Nov 13 2016

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