The 18th Annual Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival, presented by Xfinity, returns October 10-20. This year’s festival is more ambitious than ever before, combining the very best in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) film along with unique live performances.
“We’ve been working all year long to bring you an extraordinary 10 days of the best LGBT films of the year, from Cannes award-winners to world premieres and short films you might not otherwise get a chance to see on the big screen,” said Keith Bacon, who takes over the role as SLGFF Artistic Director from Jason Plourde (now Three Dollar Bill Cinema’s Executive Director).
The award-winning new documentary I Am Divine (Thursday, October 10, 7:30 p.m., Cinerama) opens the festival with a Divine-ly inspired party following the film.
“I Am Divine is the story of how an overweight, effeminate, bullied Baltimore kid transformed himself into an internationally recognized drag superstar,” says I Am Divine Director and Producer Jeffrey Schwarz. “Divine is an inspiration to misfits, outsiders, rebels, and freaks and I hope this movie reignites interest in this incredible individual. I’m thrilled I Am Divine will be making its Seattle debut opening the Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival!”
Schwarz is well-known to Seattle audiences as the director of Vito which received the SLGFF 2011 Audience Award for Favorite Documentary.
“We’re big fans of director Jeffrey Schwarz and his wildly entertaining yet vitally important work celebrating provocative queer icons like Divine, Vito Russo and more,” added Keith Bacon. “Presenting I Am Divine at Cinerama as our Opening Night Gala promises to be an exciting evening of pedigree, punk and pomp.”
Reaching for the Moon (Sunday, October 13, 7 p.m., Harvard Exit Theatre)
This sumptuous 50s period piece from renowned Brazilian director Bruno Barreto (Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands) recounts the midlife years of Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Elizabeth Bishop (Miranda Otto, Lord of the Rings). Having left America to write in Rio de Janeiro, she falls in love with architect Lota de Macedo Soares (butched up to the hilt by Brazilian TV star Glória Pires). Winner of the Audience Award for Best Feature at Frameline and Outfest.
Stranger By the Lake (Saturday, October 19, 7 p.m., AMC Pacific Place)
Winner of the Queer Palm and Best Director awards at the Cannes Film Festival, this lush and explicit exploration of queer danger and desire is a methodical, slow-burn thriller set on a seemingly serene nude beach. The real action happens in the surrounding woods, however, where friendly and handsome Franck first notices the brooding and muscular Michel and the lustful relationship becomes a deadly game of attraction, deception, prowess and provocation.
Whoopi Goldberg Presents Moms Mabley (Friday, October 18, 7:30 p.m., AMC Pacific Place)
Having broken racial and sexual boundaries as a pioneering comic talent, the African-American lesbian comedienne Jackie “Moms” Mabley has long been an icon in the comedy world. First-time director Whoopi Goldberg explores Mabley’s legacy through recently unearthed photographs, rediscovered performance footage and the insights of celebrated comedians, entertainers and historians including Eddie Murphy, Joan Rivers, Sidney Portier, Kathy Griffin, Harry Belafonte, Bill Cosby, Quincy Jones, Jerry Stiller, and Anne Meara.
The Happy Sad (Sunday, October 20, 6:30 p.m., AMC Pacific Place)
In this provocative exploration of love, fidelity and sexual identity, two couples – one black and gay, one white and straight – discover the consequences of seeing other people. From the director of Brother to Brother (Best New Director, SLGFF 2004).
Return to Grey Gardens (Thursday, October 17, 7:15 p.m., Harvard Exit Theatre)
Get set for an unforgettable trip into the dark, dilapidated side of the Hamptons, where some seriously kooky spirits are still haunting certain hallowed halls. Return to Grey Gardens stars Seattle’s own Jinkx Monsoon as Lil’ Queeny in the role that propelled her to the top of the pack on Ru Paul’s Drag Race and Peaches Christ as Big Queeny. After the show, enjoy a screening of the must-see cult classic film that spawned many an homage, Grey Gardens.
“Works by local talent – performing live – may ultimately be the most talked-about events of the festival,” said Bacon. “From Ian Bell’s Reading Rainbow production of Flamingos Forever (the never-produced sequel to Pink Flamingos), Boating with Clyde, Live with multimedia wunderkind Clyde Petersen (a favorite at this year’s Translations: The Seattle Transgender Film Festival) and Seattle superstar Jinkx Monsoon teaming up with Peaches Christ for a creepy and kooky Return to Grey Gardens, there is so much to see and experience at this year’s Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival.”
Visit Three Dollar Bill Cinema for additional information on the 18th Annual Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival and additional Three Dollar Bill Cinema programs.