1708076726 FEM Marianne Farley and Lennikim explore gender identity in new

“FEM”: Marianne Farley and Lennikim explore gender identity in new series on Unis TV

By bringing to the screen the story of a teenager exploring her gender identity through music, director Marianne Farley has a specific goal in mind: to open minds and break down prejudices. “We have to stop being afraid of differences,” she demands.

The taboos surrounding non-binarity – the fact of not recognizing oneself as purely male or purely female – are persistent, as are the taboos surrounding trans identity. The solution to deconstructing them? Better representation of these people and the human problems they face. These are therefore the focus of the FEM series, a new project by Marianne Farley.

“There was a time when homosexuality was taboo. And today, at least in Quebec, this is far less the case. But it's still difficult for non-binary and trans identities because people aren't used to seeing these people represented on screen. I think FEM is a small step in the right direction,” says the director.

Lennikim plays the main role in the FEM series.

Director Marianne Farley on the set of FEM last summer. Joël Lemay / QMI Agency

Do useful work

Because FEM is the daily life of Zav (Lennikim), a teenager for whom music has become an outlet, an essential outlet. In this way, he will actually explore his gender identity and experiment with both male and female codes over the course of the episodes to discover who he really is. However, this journey will not be without upheaval among his loved ones, especially his parents (Danny Gilmore and Marie-Soleil Dion).

The series, divided into 10 episodes of just under 30 minutes each, will appear in full length on Friday on Unis TV. Marianne Farley also hopes that the online publication will be useful for both young people and their parents.

“I want all the projects I invest time and energy in to have a social impact. I know some people will like FEM, others won't. I'm prepared for it. It's okay not to understand Zav's character; But we have to recognize that all people have the right to be who they are,” explains Marianne Farley.

An important meeting

The FEM project was the very first meeting between the filmmaker and Lennikim, to whom she entrusted the main role. But this series will not be their last project together; Since filming ended, Marianne Farley has directed Lennikim's two most recent music videos, “Things I Want” and “Scars.”

And their complicity could well deepen.

Because while steps are being taken to export the series abroad, the director expresses a strong desire to explore the world of Zav even further in a possible – and for now hypothetical – second season of FEM.

“Of course we have to wait for the reception before a decision is made. But we all hope to get the green light for a second season. We keep our fingers crossed,” she admits.

  • The FEM series is available on UnisTV from Friday. A broadcast on TV5 is planned for the summer.