A Self-Made Man

America ReFramed Season 3
  • Feature Film
  • 2015
  • 56 Mins

Gender identity issues often appear in early childhood. Some kids, like Tony, feel they were born in the wrong body and this belief conflicts with how they view and define themselves. Once such a young person makes up his or her mind to embark on a sex change both parents and the teenager face new questions and daunting challenges that they would have never imagined. Tony Ferrailo knows this from experience. As a teenager, he successfully transitioned from being female to male. Now a Certified Life Coach and Transgender Youth Advocate in New Haven, CT, we watch Tony in his role as educator and activist, guiding children as young as 8, and their parents through the arduous journey. Tony thoughtfully acknowledges from multiple perspectives the complicated dynamics of transitioning, and he creates safe spaces and support groups for teens and their families. Formerly identifying as a lesbian, Tony comes to terms with the complexities of his own life as a female-to-male transgender person. He honors the little girl that he was and tattoos that image of himself on his arm. He also muses about everlasting love and friendship. With lots of compassion, laughter and togetherness, A Self-Made Man follows Tony as he helps young people and their families transition safely.

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Film Credits

  • Lori Petchers Director, Producer
  • Dina Guttmann Editor
  • Bryan Senti Composer

Critical Acclaim

A Self-Made Man is a groundbreaking… documentary that seeks to bring visibility to issues of transgender identity across a spectrum of ages and experiences.

James Michael Nichols, The Huffington Post: HuffPost Gay Voices