Dome Karukoski’s critically acclaimed Tom of Finland, the film which has already been selected as Finland’s official submission to this year’s Academy Awards to be considered for Best Foreign Film, has just dropped its trailer. The director, who has been highly sought after since Tom of Finland bowed, is currently signed on for Tolkien for Chernin Entertainment and Fox Searchlight. Tom of Finland will release in Oct. in select cities (see below) from Kino Lorber.
Tom of Finland is about the life and work of one of the most influential and celebrated figures of the 20th century, Touko Laaksonen. The film follows him as a decorated officer when he returns home after a harrowing and heroic experience serving his country in World War II. But life in Finland during peacetime proves equally distressing. He finds post-war Helsinki rampant with homophobic persecution, and gay men around him are being pressured to marry women and have children. Touko finds refuge in his liberating art: homoerotic drawings of muscular men, free of inhibitions.
But it is only when an American publisher sees them and invites Tuoko over to the West Coast that his life really takes a turn. Finally being able to walk free and proud in Los Angeles, Tuoko dives head first into the sexual revolution, becoming an icon and a rallying point. His work – made famous by his signature ‘Tom of Finland’ – became the emblem of a generation of men and fanned the flames of the worldwide gay revolution.
The Finnish director Karukoski is an award-winning filmmaker who has worked both in film and TV. He also directed Heart of a Lion, a film about a Neo-Nazi who falls in love with a woman who turns out to have a bi-racial child. That film from 2013 put him on the map around Hollywood as a director to watch.
Tom of Finland opens Friday, Oct. 13 in New York’s The Quad and a week later on Oct. 20 in Los Angeles at the Nuart as well as in San Francisco.