Tom of Finland

The story of the artist behind the iconic gay Tom of Finland artwork will be brought to the big screen.

The film will profile the man behind the artwork, Touko Laaksonen, who returned home to Helsinki after serving in World War II only to find he was persecuted for his homosexuality.

Touko conducted secret affairs and was pressured to marry a woman, before finding freedom in his artwork: homoerotic drawings of muscular men in sexually uninhibited situations.

After he was first published in 1957 in influential Physique Pictorial magazine, the publication who gave him the pen name Tom of Finland, his work developed a worldwide following and helped start a gay revolution in the US.

“This is the story of a man ahead of his time, bravely standing up against a world virulently against his right to be who he was – a homosexual man with homosexual fantasies,” said director Dome Karukoski.

“The story shows how literally one person can create change in the world, even with something as simple as an artist’s tools.”

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