Way OUT West Film Fest to Premiere Virtually Throughout New Mexico on Oct. 9
Annual Film Festival Celebrates Diversity of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) Experience
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (October 1, 2020) – For the first time in its 18-year history, the Way OUT West Film Fest will host its annual film festival virtually throughout New Mexico to celebrate the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) experience through film.
Running Oct. 9 – 18, the festival will include 10 days of feature films, documentaries, short programs and special events – all taking place online.
Tickets start at $10 for individual films, with multi-screening and all-access passes available. Films will become available starting Friday, Oct. 9, and each day a new group of films will become available for a limited amount of days. A full schedule can be found here and highlighted programs are included below.
“Like many film festivals across the country, we were deeply impacted by COVID19, but we know our communities need art and inspiration now more than ever,” said festival director Roberto Appicciafoco. “The Way OUT West Film Fest has earned a strong and loyal following throughout our history for its high-quality programming and community focus, and going virtual allows us to invite more people into the festival family. Thanks to the fantastic work of our steering committee, we are excited to be hosting a great slate of programming that truly has something for everyone.”
This year’s festival will include more than 100 films – the largest lineup in its history – that will be screened in 36 unique programs, thanks in part to grand sponsors like AARP New Mexico. Major themes include films focused on LGBTQ+ youth and seniors, films about the intersection of being black and queer, lesbian and bisexual subjects, and Latinx and foreign language films, which has had a longstanding presence in the festival.
The Way OUT West Film Fest is proud to screen the THE WHISTLE, a home-grown documentary by Director Stormmiguel Florez that tells the story of a secret code created by and shared among young lesbians in Albuquerque during the 1970s and 80s.
The University of New Mexico’s Truman Health Services, a grand sponsor of the festival, will also host a free screening CURED, a documentary chronicling one of the most significant turning points in LGBTQ+ history. For most of the 20th century, being homosexual in America meant you could be clinically diagnosed as mentally ill and subject to drastic medical interventions posing as “cures.” “CURED” tells the story of the scrappy band of gay and lesbian activists, from both outside and within the psychiatric field, who took on the medical establishment’s views about homosexuality in the 1960s-70s and fought to have the American Psychiatric Association remove the stigma of mental illness from its medical manuals.
“Throughout our history, LGBTQ+ people and our allies have had to build community in creative ways,” said festival manager Jake McCook. “The pandemic has been especially challenging for many of us, who often seek comfort at in-person events, gatherings and other safe spaces we don’t have access to right now. Thanks to the generosity of our donors, volunteers, members, and especially City of Albuquerque and Bernalillo County officials, we are proud to welcome people from all four corners of the state to join us in celebrating our community through the art of storytelling.”
The festival’s opening night film, available for screening beginning Friday, Oct. 9, is SUBLET. The film, directed by festival favorite Eytan Fox, is a heartwarming ode to gay men and to aging that tells the story of a New York Times travel writer who befriends a handsome tenant in Tel Aviv.
EMA, the International Centerpiece film, will be screened starting Wednesday, Oct. 14, and features Chilean Director Palo Larraín, actor Gael García Bernal, and actress Mariana Di Giólamo, who plays a dancer, mother and pyrotechnics lover who is on a quest to reclaim her adopted son Polo.
On Sunday, Oct. 18, the Way OUT West Film Fest closes with the film BREAKING FAST, a romantic comedy that tackles deep issues of faith, friendship and sexuality with upbeat energy and a big heart.
The festival’s full lineup can be found here and additional highlighted programs are included below:
BLACK + QUEER ON SCREEN: Acclaimed shorts that explore the black queer experience.
DE COLORES: This collection of shorts honors a multitude of queer and trans voices of color.
LESBIAN & BISEXUAL SUBJECTS:
For more information about the Way OUT West Film Fest, visit https://www.wayoutwestfilmfest.com