The 29th annual NewFest, New York City’s premier LGBT film festival, is open for business now through October 24th, opening with a screening of Anthony Caronna and Alexander Smith’s Susanne Bartsch: On Top, with RuPaul, Simon Doonan, Amanda Lepore, Michael Musto among those paying homage to Bartsch, fondly known as New York’s “Queen of the Night.”
It sets the tone for a ‘Projection of Pride,’ the accompanying campaign created by Ogilvy following last year’s launch of Type With Pride, when the agency created a rainbow inspired font named “Gilbert” to honor the memory of the late Gilbert Baker, the LGBTQ activist and artist who created the iconic Rainbow Flag and passed away in March.
Ogilvy’s ‘Projection of Pride’ creative celebrates the 140 LGBT films this year on display around the city from Times Square to public transport. “Using direct light through prisms we casted a cinematic rainbow across faces in a series of portraits,” said Bill Berman, Group Director and Ogilvy and head of the Ogilvy Pride professional network. “In essence, taking the rainbow—the iconic symbol of pride traditionally found in Gilbert Baker’s flag—and moving it into the real world.”
“I love the Times Square billboard,” he added. “I like to think of travelers from around the world, including from countries where gay rights are not a reality, looking up and seeing a welcoming invitation to an LGBT Film Festival shining bright above the city.”
NewFest launched in 1988 as a non-profit media arts organization dedicated to showcasing the newest and best LGBT media for the greater New York metropolitan area.
— NewFest (@NewFestNYC) September 7, 2017
Several NewFest documentaries this year chronicle LGBT history such as Jeffrey Schwarz’s The Fabulous Allan Carr, about the legendary producer of Grease and Can’t Stop the Music, a 1980 disco movie starring a heterosexual version of the Village People and a pre-transition Caitlyn Jenner.
— Allan Carr (@allancarrmovie) October 19, 2017
Also part of Carr’s legacy—the original Broadway version of the musical La Cage aux Folles, created by Harvey Fierstein and Jerry Herman, which won six Tony Awards in 1983.
Jochen Hick’s My Wonderful West Berlin, chronicles the LGBT community in Germany’s capital post-World War II; and Andrea Weiss’s Bones of Contention, sheds light on human-rights atrocities in Franco-era Spain through the lens of LGBT persecution.
Director Itako’s Boys for Sale, takes-cn the underworld of the Shinjuku 2-chrome section of Tokyo, which one male prostitute or urisen notes is “the gay center of Asia.” There are more than 800 gay businesses in Japan and the film depicts young men from their teens to their late 20s who have sex with men for money.
October 22 features a Spotlight Screening of Professor Marston and the Wonder Women, about the real-life psychologist William Moulton Marston (played by Luke Evans), his psychologist wife Elizabeth (Rebecca Hall) and their shared mistress Olive Byrne (Bella Heathcote)—who inspired the character of Wonder Woman.
And on the same day, this year’s New York Centerpiece is After Louie, featuring artist Sam (Alan Cumming), who survived the AIDS crisis, and younger Braeden (Zachary Booth) in an intergenerational look at the evolution of gay history.
As The Village Voice notes, “With the unexpectedly deep and moving Professor Marston and the Wonder Women in theaters and the excellent and uncannily accurate BPM (Beats Per Minute) opening this week, audiences no longer have to go to queer film festivals to see good films about queer people created by queer filmmakers.”