Hao Zhou is a filmmaker originally from rural China and now based in the U.S. Midwest. Zhou’s work centers on marginalized voices and less-seen spaces, with a focus on LGBTQ+ themes. An alum of the Cinéfondation Résidence and Berlinale Talents, Zhou has directed an indie feature, The Night, which premiered at the 64th Berlin International Film Festival. Most recently Zhou’s work has been supported by Art With Impact and the Iowa Arts Council/Produce Iowa. In 2021, Zhou’s short film Frozen Out won a Gold Medal at the 48th Student Academy Awards. Zhou is currently working on multiple projects both nonfiction and narrative.
Here, Hopefully (w.t.) follows Zee, a nonbinary international nursing student from rural China, as they seek to build a sustainable and gender-affirming life in the Midwest despite the challenges they face with racism and xenophobia.