Tales of the Waria

Four transgender individuals in Indonesia, the world's largest Muslim country, search for love and acceptance with unexpected results.

Film Signature Image
Global Voices
Premiere Date
June 3, 2012
60 minutes
Funding Initiative
Open Call

Kathy Huang

Kathy Huang’s award-winning documentary Tales of the Waria explored Indonesian transgender love stories. Her film A Guangzhou Love Story documents the challenges of Afro-Chinese couples attempting to forge a meaningful future together in the face of racism and xenophobia. Her previous work, Scribble’s Creations, Night Visions and Miss Chinatown U.S.A., Show more screened at festivals across the U.S., including Tribeca and SILVERDOCS, and aired on public television.

Huang received an M.A. in documentary film production from Stanford University and currently works in New York as a freelance cinematographer and producer. Show less

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The Film

Indonesia is home to the world’s largest Muslim population. It is also home to a transgender community known as the warias, biological men who live openly as women. Tales of the Waria follows four characters from this little-known community as they search for romance and companionship. At times comical and at times heartbreaking, the film uncovers a world that not only defies our expectations of gender and Islam, but also reveals our endless capacity as human beings to search for love — whatever the consequences.