Picture Character

Directed by Ian Cheney, Martha Shane
80 minutes
Unclassified 15+
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Emojis are an international language, crossing cultural and linguistic boundaries. But how does an emoji go from an idea to an international phenomenon?

The fascinating story of emojis begins with their creator Shigetaka Kurita in late ’90s Japan and his original 176 symbols. “I find it hard to believe what they have become,” Kurita says. A hit in Japan, within a decade emojis were in global use. Today, boffins at the Unicode Consortium, who are responsible for approving new emoji requests, struggle to keep up with demand. How do you make sure a new language isn’t unintentionally chauvinist or xenophobic? Meet Rayouf, schoolgirl campaigner for the hijabi emoji; Katrina, who pushed for a diversity of skin tones; and Florencia, who’s trying to represent Argentina’s iconic mate tea with just a few pixels. You’ll never look at emojis in quite the same way again.

Everything you always wanted to know about emojis but were afraid to ask.
Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter

Special Guest

Paul D. Hunt
Typeface Designer and Font Developer, Adobe
Paul is one of Adobe’s representatives to the Unicode consortium and has participated in its Emoji Subcommittee, advocating for better gender representation within the system of emoji.


Mon 10 June
Dendy Newtown
Past Event Cancel
Sat 15 June
Dendy Opera Quays Cinema 1
Past Event Cancel
Supported By
Program Strand
International Documentaries
Unclassified 15+
USA, Germany, Japan, Argentina, Austria, UK, Scotland
In English, Japanese, Arabic and Spanish with English subtitles
Ian Cheney, Martha Shane
Ian Cheney, Martha Shane, Jennifer Lee
Emily Topper, Ian Cheney, Lucy Martens
Frederick Shanahan
Australian Premiere
Documentary, Women Directors, Arts, Off-Beat, Science & Tech
Company Credits
World Sales: Submarine Entertainment
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