Fargo, N.D. (August 4, 2021) – The Fargo-Moorhead LGBT Film Festival Jury is proud to announce the Official Selections for the 13th annual film festival. 21 films will be screened as part of a hybrid theatrical and online experience from September 13-18. Tickets and passes for the festival go on sale Wednesday, August 11.
“We’re excited to bring these films to Fargo-Moorhead, and to online audiences in North Dakota and Minnesota,” said Sean Coffman, Executive Director of the Human Family and Director of the 2021 Fargo-Moorhead LGBT Film Festival.
In addition to these Official Selections of contemporary cinema, the festival will be hosting online screenings of important historical queer cinema and special retrospective screenings highlighting the past work of filmmakers selected for this year’s festival. More details about these exciting opportunities will be released in the coming weeks.
The Official Selections for the 13th annual festival include:
Kiss Me Kosher
Directed by Shirel Peleg
A subversive love story between clashes cultures and families, KISS ME KOSHER is a romantic misadventure crossing all borders. When two generaations of Israeli women fall for a German women and an Palestinian man, choas follows. What happens with loves who don’t fit but do belong together?
Director by Stéphanie Lamorré
Sherente, a two spirit-genderqueer teenager from Rhode Island’s Narragansett tribe performs traditional dance in competitions at annual regional pow wows of New England tribes.
There is no written rule which prohibits two spirit-genderqueer people to compete in dances different from their birth gender. Wearing traditional female dress, Sherente performs with joy and beauty. However, behind the scenes, tribal leaders manipulate scores or disqualify him outright because they believe in traditional (White) gender roles.
In spite of being blindsided by ongoing dishonesty and deception, Sherente continues to perform regardless of insensitive behavior from tribal elders and others in his native community. Sherente’s enduring courage and self respect are met with an outpouring of support from family, pow wow attendees, and fellow dancers.
The Mirror Will Take Us Home
Director by Joshua Harmon
Baltimore singer-songwriter Jeremiah Lloyd Harmon contemplates what it means to feel at home in a journey that chronicles his life growing up gay in a conservative Christian family to adulthood. Jeremiah looks for answers about himself and the tricky intersection of art and business as he’s offered a record deal after nearly winning American Idol.
Pieces of Us
Director by Cheryl Allsion
Pieces of Us is an intimate look at the personal journeys of LGBTQ+ hate crime survivors who, by choosing to take their recovery public, inspire the survivor in all of us. The film juxtaposes the inspirational stories of recovery each of the film’s subjects (including transgender activist and Stonewall Riots survivor Victoria Cruz, and Prince Manvendra Singh Gohil of India) have experienced with the powerful connections their public actions have produced. Their stories take us to New York City, Denver and India to witness how intersectionality and speaking your truth can build a support community and even spark global change. The film explores the resistance of these unlikely heroes and survivors, people who didn’t choose to have their rights violated and their lives changed forever, but from those experiences chose to stand against hate and give voice to the voiceless.
Yes I Am – The Ric Weiland Story
Directed by Aaron Bear
Narrated by Zachary Quinto and produced by Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato (World Of Wonder), the story of Ric Weiland’s life and legacy can be measured in incredible milestones.
He was one of the first employees at Microsoft. He helped focus and organize their early successes. It made him wealthy and influential at an early age. He never felt overly comfortable with his wealth – he didn’t feel that he deserved it. Other people had worked harder for what they had, he thought. So to quiet the nagging doubt, he turned to philanthropy.
Out and proud since the 70’s, Ric was a champion of gay rights. During his life, he donated more than 20 million dollars to fund more than 60 non-profit organizations. His efforts to establish representation and resources for the LGBT community still have a profound impact today.
Directed by Anna Kuperberg and Julie Caskey
Carla Jean Johnson accepts her fast and aggressive cancer diagnosis with clarity and grace while photographer Anna Kuperberg, her long time wife, documents their final days and weeks together.
With mesmerizing footage and intimate recordings of the couple’s final conversations, Eleven Weeks is a story more about love than death.
Directed by T. Cooper and Allison Glock-Cooper
“I Am Samantha,” by singer-songwriter Benjamin Scheuer, was inspired by his friend, Samantha Williams. Director T Cooper and Allison Glock-Cooper gathered 27 trans actors to make the music video, and to tell the story of the universal human journey to find identity, acceptance and love.
The O Show
Directed by Sharad Khare
Orene Askew is a motivational speaker, DJ and inspiration to youth and her many peers in Vancouver. Her work as a community leader has enabled so many youth and individuals to see themselves in her and her incredible diverse work that reflects the many communities Orene is a part of.
This Documentary will look into the life of an Afro Canadian, indigenous, two spirited human that continues to speak out and represents her black community in Vancouver during the BLM protests and marches in Vancouver, her LGBTQ community by leading the PRIDE Parade as the official DJ (DJ Oshow) and participating by taking an active seat on their board, and being an elected member and spokesperson for the Squamish Nation and Chief and Council.
Before the Eruption
Directed by Roberto Pérez Toledo
Although a volcanic eruption can occur without any prior signal, volcanoes will most likely issue different types of warnings before the eruption begins. We barely saw it coming.
Directed by Hisonni Mustafa Johnson
In this dialogue-driven short film, an interracial lesbian couple attempts to ease the racial tension between them and their parents using the power of straight talk and a little bit of Cannabis.
Dinner 4 3
Directed by Frederic Heringes
A successful businessman and his trophy wife give each other everything they need…well, maybe not everything. They soon discover the solution to the big problem with their marriage in this comic video opera.
Directed by Sajjad Shahhatami
The protagonist of the story faces a dilemma of choosing between sense and sensibility regarding one’s innermost feelings. He has been judged from the very beginning by the ones closest to him. The fear of these never-ending judgments fills him with doubt and he has to work against the clock to achieve his goal as he knows that one’s true identity is what matters most to them.
Last Summer with Uncle Ira
Directed by Gary Jaffe and Katie Ennis
Summer, 1991. Before he leaves for his last year at summer camp, closeted teenager Daniel is nudged by his mother Rachel to share a moment and a glass of lemonade with his Uncle Ira, who is dying of complications from HIV/AIDS. Ira wants to talk about their shared identity together before time runs out, but Daniel may not be ready to take that step. Starring Emmy-nominee Wayne Wilcox (“Gilmore Girls,” “Only Children”), Igby Rigney (“Blue Bloods”) and Tony Award-winner Stephanie J. Block (“Rise,” “Madam Secretary.”)
A Love Letter to Black Male Femininity
Directed by Penuel “Blue” Nawa
An exploration of gender expression in Black men, and a love letter to the corners of the Black community that have made that exploration possible. A multimedia combination of poetry, film, fashion, music, and visual art to illustrate the multifaceted beauty of the intersection at Blackness and Queerness.
Directed by Sydne Horton
Artie Talbot, a spry and self-conscious trans boy descends upon Prom with his best friend Lucy. Artie’s nominated for prom king, and is doing his best to hide his excitement. He doesn’t believe his school would vote a transguy for Prom King despite Lucy’s demand that he’s already won. As they get closer to the court announcements, Lucy notices something on the back of Artie’s pants. Blood. Artie realizes of all the nights, he’s gotten his period on this one. This erupts into a metamorphosis that mirrors the emotional and physical transformation of the transmasculine experience and how it will change Artie’s life forever.
Directed by Lukas Vizner
A short movie about a relationship of a talented pianist Christoph and an experienced porn-star Philip opens a complex topic of prejudice in society, as well as within LGBTI community.
Pappo E Bucco
Directed by Antonio Losito
Elia and Aldo are two ex-clowns. They have been living together for years, isolated from everyone and everything. Aldo has been asking Elia to help him end his suffering due to his illness for a long time. Elia tries to dissuade him in every way possible until he realizes that Aldo’s condition is more serious than what he had thought.
Directed by Faraz Arif Ansari
SHEER QORMA is a story of belonging and acceptance, identity and family, and how it comes together under one roof, as resilient, queer Muslim women and non-binary characters of color, choose to embrace the love that exists beyond their personal beliefs and social moralities.
Put the Brights On
Directed by Raymond Rea
PUT THE BRIGHTS ON pairs edited interviews with rural Transgender subjects with original 16mm and s8 visuals as well as found footage to create a non-fiction experimental look at Trans people who prefer not to live in the city. Recorded and shot in “Greater Minnesota” but also relevant to the national focus on the rural/urban divide
Directed by Pierre Jean Gonzalez and Paul Anthony Notice II
An experimental short film looking into the mind of a Gay, Afro-Latino questioning his self-worth. Inspired and based on a poem by Cedric Leiba Jr.
Directed by Sven Niemeyer
Karl Heinrich Ulrichs (1825-1895), was a lawyer, journalist, publisher, writer, pioneer of sexology and is known as the “first openly gay man” and “LGBTQ+”-an activist in Germany.
At the German Juristentag in Munich in 1867, he publicly called for the impunity of same-sex sexual acts for the first time in a speech, which led to tumultuous scenes among the audience and his speech being broken off.
Even if many things have changed since then, there is still a long way to go…
Hand in Hand
Directed by Richard O’Connor
Sissy Goodwin has always loved wearing skirts and dresses, but he hid that part of himself while growing up in 1950s Wyoming. When he first met his now-wife Vickie, Sissy kept up a macho appearance. Eventually shared his whole self with her. Vickie stayed by his side, and despite cruelty and intolerance from neighbors, the couple grew closer and more in love over their five-decade-long marriage.
The 13th Annual Fargo-Moorhead LGBT Film Festival takes place as a special hybrid theatrical and online experience from September 13-18 at the historic Fargo Theatre in downtown Fargo, North Dakota. Tickets and passes for the festival go on sale Wednesday, August 11.