09 20 Oct '24
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Paul B. Preciado

Orlando, ma biographie politique (Orlando, My Political Biography)

Edition 2023
98' - 2023 - Documentary - Dialogue: French
Director: Paul B. Preciado Composer: Clara Deshayes With: Paul B. Preciado, Oscar S Miller, Clara Deshayes
In 1928, Virginia Woolf wrote Orlando, the first novel in which the main character changes sex in the middle of the story. A century later, trans writer and activist Paul B. Preciado decides to send afilm letter to Virginia Woolf: her Orlando has come out of her fiction and is living a life she could have never imagined.
A century after the publication of “Orlando: a biography” by Virginia Woolf, Paul B. Preciado, philosopher and trans activist, addresses a letter to tell her that her character has come true: the world is becoming Orlandesque. Preciado calls a cast: "Who are the contemporary Orlandos?" 25 different people, all trans and non-binary, from 8 years old to 70 who come to play Woolf’s fictional character while also narrating their own lives; and a series of mid twentieth century trans archives that evoke the real historical Orlandos in their struggle for recognition and visibility. The spectator gradually finds Orlando’s bearings as the portrait emerges of a collective being with multiple faces, voices, bodies. The film follows the same structure as the Virginia Woolf’s novel: a travel diary through history, both intimate and political. “I first read Woolf’s book when I was a teenager in Spain, well before I knew that gender transitioning was possible. Woolf’s fictional character allowed me to imagine my own life, to desire and to embody change. It turns out that with the years, I have become an Orlando. My biography is made of the collective history of thousands of invisible Orlandos. It is a history of struggle within an oppressive gender and sex binary regime. Being trans is not just to transition from femininity to masculinity (or vice versa), but to engage in a process of internal "orlandisation": a poetic journey in which a new language to name oneself and the world is invented.” A gender transition is a transformative voyage, a movement of disidentification, a practice of freedom, rather than a mere production of identity. Thus, the film draws the portrait of a changing world and the ongoing gender and non-binary revolution.
"The Berlinale lists Orlando, My Political Biography as a documentary, but genre, like gender, is a regulatory system that Preciado has no time for. He wants out of the binary trap. This expansive film unfolds the complexity and diversity of trans experiences without ever universalizing—and while having fun." - Film Comment

Image gallery

B66b1bcf fbab 48c5 8ec0 3a970c0ceae2



Paul B. Preciado


Clara Deshayes


Paul B. Preciado, Oscar S Miller, Clara Deshayes


Paul B. Preciado

Director of Photography

Victor Zébo


Yotam Ben-David


Yaël Fogiel, Laetitia Gonzalez

Production studios

24 Images


The Party Film Sales

More information



Countries of production





Paul B. Preciado
Orlando, ma biographie politique (2023)

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