How does cinema create and sustain queer public cultures? What is the role of film festivals in forming audiences or creating new kinds of queer space? How can queer filmmaking and curating festivals intersect with activism? We kick off a day of GQC events at Brighton’s CineCity film festival with a roundtable discussion on these urgent questions of queer film culture in a global context. LGBT film festivals have become a staple of the international festival circuit but around the world, film screenings are still sites for homophobic violence and some critics say the spaces for diverse views of queer life are limited in mainstream LGBT cinema. Join filmmakers, activists and curators from New York, London and Mumbai as we debate these and other issues.
Our speakers are Campbell X, a British filmmaker who After Ellen calls “a badass queer” and whose new feature Stud Life is a hip, urban queer romance for the YouTube generation. Engaging with black and queer subcultures, Campbell rejects safe modes of representation and argues for creating a “Black queer aesthetic”. She also challenges monocultural ways of LGBT seeing, and brings together lesbian, gay and genderqueer actors in surprising and beautiful films.
Sridhar Rangayan is founder and director of Kashish: the Mumbai International Queer Film Festival, and an award-winning filmmaker who has moved across fiction and documentary with apparent ease. His films include drag-queen comedy Pink Mirror (2006), drama Yours Emotionally (2007) through to his current work-in-progress Breaking Free, a documentary about those who fought to decriminalise homosexuality in India and the historic changes now underway in the country. He is also an LGBT rights activist and founder of the Humsafar Trust, one of India’s largest community-based organisations working with the rights and health of MSM and transgender people.
Stephen Kent Jusick is an experimental filmmaker and programmer of MIX NYC, the New York Experimental Lesbian and Gay Film/Video Festival. He’s been curating queer experimental cinema since 1989, first at the Baltimore Lesbian and Gay Film Festival, which he founded, and for many years at MIX in New York. He has curated queer films in San Francisco, Vancouver, and at many diverse and wonderful locations in NYC. He has been involved in queer film installations, film distribution, writing about queer film culture and, of course, making his own 8mm work.
Finally, Brian Robinson, programmer for the London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival. Brian is a University of Sussex alum, so we’re especially pleased to bring him back down to Brighton to take part in this roundtable. From his days running the Gay Soc film club at Sussex, he’s been involved in curating queer film for a long time…and he’s been programming at the London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival since 1999.
We’re thrilled to be hosting such a fascinating roster of speakers and we hope you’ll join us in discussion — and stick around for the film screenings afterwards!
The event is at Sallis Benney Theatre, 58-67 Grand Parade, Brighton. Tickets are £6 / 4 and can be purchased on the door or in advance from the Duke of York cinema. Tickets for this event also get you into the following screening of Kashish: New Queer Films from India.