qFLIX Philadelphia 2020, the LGBTQ+ film festival kicks off on the red carpet for the hilarious opening night comedy: “Straight Up,” written, directed and starring James Sweeney as a gay 20-something who finds his intellectual soulmate in a 20-something actress. He might be gay, but she might not care. The Opening Night continues with the Black & Pink Gala, hosted by One Liberty Observation Deck on the 57th Floor of One Liberty. Attendees will celebrate 26 years of LGBTQ+ film festivals among the stars with a 360- degree view of the city and will enjoy a night which features light fare by Di Bruno Brothers, delicious desserts, and an open bar, along with music and dancing! Truly a great way to start the week-long festival!
We are proud to announce that our Centerpiece films will be as follows . . .
Monday, March 23
Director Matt Tyrnauer will be in attendance to receive the Artistic Achievement Award for Documentary Directing during a retrospective of his works: “Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood, ”Studio 54,” and “Where’s My Roy Cohn?”
Wednesday, March 25
“Tu Me Manques.” Director Rodrigo Bellot’s drama about a Bolivian man seeking answers to his gay son’s death. This groundbreaking film uncovers the cultural difficulties around homosexuality and suicide in Boliva.
“Sell By.” The directorial debut by actor Mike Doyle is an ensemble comedy about romance in the digital age. Doyle will be on hand for a Q&A, and the film stars out actors Scott Evans and Augustus Prew, have been invited to attend.
“Latter Day Jew.” A documentary about comedian H. Alan Scott, a gay former Mormon and cancer survivor preparing for his Bar Mitzvah. Producer and Philadelphia native Todd Shotz will attend.
Thursday, March 26
“Scream, Queen! My Nightmare On Elm Street” is a documentary about Mark Patton, the gay actor whose appearance in the queer-tinged horror film “A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge,” derailed his acting career. Nightmare will also precede the screening of Scream, Queen. Patton will be on hand for a Q&A.
Friday, March 27
“Our Dance Of Revolution” tells the story of how black queer folks in Toronto faced every adversity, from invisibility to police brutality, and over a four-decade span rose up to become a vibrant, triple-snap-fierce community. This film is playing with “Legendary: 30 Years of Philly Ballroom,” a short documentary made by the staff of the Philadelphia Inquirer which gives an inside look into the efforts to preserve Philadelphia’s ballroom scene, a black LGBTQ+ safe-space that has endured for 30 years.
Saturday, March 28
“Cicada,” Co-written, co-directed, and co-starring newcomer Matthew Fifer, this drama concerns a traumatized man embarking on an interracial relationship with a man who also has a troubled past. This will mark the East Coast Premiere of this film.
“A Tribute to Ben Baur.” This actor/writer/producer will receive the festival’s Rising Star Award. Baur burst on the scene with the webseries Hunting Season and has since been developing his career as a writer and producer with series such as #Adulting, and short films including “Something New” and “The Office is Mine.” Episodes from his series along with his new shorts including “Next Level Shit,” and “A Halloween Trick,” will be screened, followed by a Q&A about his career.
“The Two of Us.” Filippo Meneghetti’s award-winning comedy-drama about two neighbors (Barbara Sukowa and Martine Chevallier) whose relationship comes to light when one’s daughter discovers the truth about them.
qFLIX will also showcase gay filmmaker Laurent Maria’s work. The filmmaker’s new feature, “Nina” will screen with his shorts, “Sunday” and “Anita.” He will be in attendance for a post-screening Q&A.
Sunday, March 29
“Disclosure.” Direct from Sundance, this documentary examines how trans performers had their lives and perceptions shaped by television and film. Laverne Cox will receive the first-ever Marsha P. Johnson Inspiration Award for her advocacy of the transgender community. Lilly Wachowski, Yance Ford, MJ Rodriguez, Jamie Clayton and Chaz Bono, among others are featured. Director Sam Feder is expected to attend and several artists from the film have been invited.
CLOSING NIGHT FILM & AWARD CEREMONY
The festival closes out on Sunday, March 29 with the East Coast Premiere of “Breaking Fast,” a romantic comedy about Mo (Haaz Sleiman), a practicing Muslim living in West Hollywood, who meets Kal (Michael Cassidy), an All-American guy who offers to break fast with him during the holy month of Ramadan.
Haaz Sleiman (“Little America,” “Nurse Jackie”) will receive the festival’s Artistic Achievement in Acting Award. Director Mike Mosallam will receive the First-Time Director Award. Festival Producers Thom Cardwell and Bill Egan felt this feature was truly award worthy because of the actor’s and director’s efforts to showcase a positive, gay Muslim character. “Breaking Fast” originated as a short film, and that version will screen in the “Sex and Dating” short film program at the festival.
The Festival’s Closing Night Celebration will be held at the Cambria Hotel with dining, desserts, and dancing.