5 nanomoles


The Olimpic dream of a trans woman

(in production)



A production by ETHNOS – Gruppo Trans APS
with the support of:
UISP – Unione Italiana Sport per Tutti
Arcigay – Associazione LGBTI italiana
Associazone Retinite Pigmentosa e Malattie Rare in Oftalmologia
Based on an idea by Milena Bargiacchi, Christian Leonardo Cristalli
Script: Leonardo Arpino, Elisa Mereghetti, Valentina Petrillo
Directed by : Elisa Mereghetti and Marco Mensa
Photography: Marco Mensa
Development and fundraising: Andrea Ruggeri
Sound: Francesco Piazza



Bologna, 2020. Valentina is a transgender athlete with a visual impairment. For just over a year she has been taking hormones in order to feminize her appearance. Prior to her transition, when she was running in the male category, she won several Italian titles. Now she sets out to reach her dream: to take part in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games as Italy’s first trans* athlete. Her mission may seem easy. The criteria she must meet in order to be eligible to run in the women’s category are simple: maintain her blood testosterone levels below 5 nanomoles per liter for 12 months or more. And – of course – run fast enough to qualify for the Games. But things get more complicated day by day. Valentina’s club and coach drop her, because they fear she will have an unfair advantage over other women. Transitioning is stressful, but even more disturbing is the realization that she doesn’t seem to fit in the sports world as she used to. The meeting with a new coach and the support of her family give her the strength to continue her battle. A battle against the stopwatch and against society, which is running way too slow for her.