Out Actress and Activist Maria Bello will be Appearing at PhillyAIDSThrift @Giovanni’s Room, Sunday, May 3 @ 1 PM

Here’s some exciting late breaking news for this weekend!

Out actress and activist Maria Bello will be appearing at PhillyAIDSThrift @Giovanni’s Room, this Sunday, May 3, 1 pm, 12th and Pine Street, Philadelphia, for a discussion and signing of her brand new book, released just this week, entitled “Whatever…Love is Love: Questioning the Labels We Give Ourselves” with host/interviewer veteran film critic Gary Kramer.

Bello has appeared in the movies Permanent Midnight, Payback, Coyote Ugly, The Cooler, A History of Violence, Thank You for Smoking, and The Jane Austen Book Club.

Interestingly, according to the publisher’s press release, the book expands upon the essay she originally wrote in The New York Times, “Coming Out as a Modern Family”, which was one of the newspaper’s most widely read special features.

Bello is one of our own in more ways than one, beyond being out, she’s Philadelphia area born and raised (actually in Norristown) and Villanova University educated, so we may rightly claim her as a “native daughter” of the City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly Affection.” (I hope that she approves of that label. I think she will.)

Even we at qFLIX Philadelphia have to be careful of labels because it’s something that Bello really despises.

In a recent interview in “Confidential” in the New York Daily News, she said “Facebook added 51 new gender options last year. When I read them I was like, ‘Oh, my God, I’m at least 15 of these.’” (Bello also has a rip roaring sense of humor and is as comfortable as a person can be in their own skin.)

Preferring to be as label-less as possible, the 48-year-old Bello has been in a relationship with a woman for a number of years, and describes herself as a “whatever.”

Those gender options that Bello mentioned are genuinely appealing to her. In fact, her book explores “the fluidity of sexuality is one of the themes.”

“This isn’t a book of answers. It’s a book of questions,” she likes to point out to critics and readers alike.

The multi-talented Bello can really write. No ghost writer penning her book. Just the opposite, she admitted that she had filled a hundred plus journals during her childhood in Philadelphia.

They were saved under her bed in her childhood room in the family house.

The story goes that Bello rediscovered them in 2013, while recovering from parasites she had picked up while doing humanitarian work in Haiti, actress Maria Bello started reading her journals.

According to the NYDN, “Bello started with her favorite, a well-worn green notebook plastered with hearts. She expected a trip down memory lane but instead she began asking herself questions, trying to get at who she was and who she had become.”

“What Bello came to realize was ‘there was something else eating me alive, something that also needed to come out. It was much more powerful than the parasite. It was my truth.’”

What are you planning this Sunday? Our advice at qFLIX Philadelphia is reschedule and take yourself and your friends to Giovanni’s Room to meet and greet Maria Bello, one beautiful woman who is unique in her viewpoints, voice and writing style. She is way beyond labels—so we can’t call her Hollywood? Let’s ask and see what she tells us.