Intersex Manga Creator Stars in Documentary About Personal Experiences
posted on by Jennifer Sherman
Manga creator Shō Arai is starring in the Seibetsu ga, Nai! Intersex Mangaka no Queer na Hibi (I Have No Sex!: An Intersex Manga Creator's Daily Life) documentary film. The project's Motion Gallery crowdfunding campaign has six days left.
The documentary focuses on Arai's life, explores the question "How is love possible as a sexual minority?," and aims to fund screenings and distribution publicity for the film through the crowdfunding project. As of the posting of this article, the crowdfunding project has raised 1,736,500 yen (about US$16,000) of its 4 million yen (about US$37,000) goal with six days remaining.
Arai was raised as a woman but had times of becoming more masculine or feminine during teenage years due to hormone fluctuations. Arai married actor and voice actor IKKAN while living as a woman. At 30 years old, Arai underwent testing and discovered that they are intersex due to a chromosomal condition.
Arai decided to undergo medical procedures to transition to presenting as male and changed their first name to Shō. Arai divorced IKKAN, but the two reportedly maintained an amicable relationship. Arai moved from Tokyo to Nagoya and met their manga assistant Kou Usaki. Usaki is gay, and he writes boys-love manga. Arai and Usaki now live together. The documentary chronicles Arai and Usaki's lives while discussing intersex issues and also telling the stories of transgender and X gender individuals.
The documentary's title derives from the title of Arai's Seibetsu ga, Nai! four-panel essay manga, which reflects Arai's personal experiences as an intersex person. Bunkasha published the series' first compiled book volume in 2005, and the 15th volume shipped in 2015.
The film will open at Shibuya Uplink theater in Tokyo on July 28.