Polari26 is set to be one of the most lively and engaging festivals in the organization's history. This year's selections hail from seventeen countries and encompass a wide range of genres, from science fiction to comedy. Ninety-percent of the films are Texas, Southwest or U.S. Premieres and dozens of filmmakers, actors and industry insiders are anticipated to attend -- including actress Sarah Hagan (FREAKS AND GEEKS, BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER), queer cinema trailblazer Pratibha Parmar (KHUSH and WARRIOR MARKS) and performance artist Nao Bustamante (WORK OF ART).
"Polari demonstrates the true meaning of movies and overall impressive nature of Austin's vibrant queer and queer film community," said Ian Wolfley, director of BUG CHASER (Polari25 Selection).
Polari's Opening Night Film is FIVE DANCES, a sensual film of dances and heart-stopping romance set within New York's modern dance community, directed by Alan Brown (in attendance) and starring Ryan Steele (in attendance). The Festival Centerpiece is THE NEW BLACK, an explosive documentary that uncovers the complicated and often combative histories of the African-American and LGBT civil rights movements, while also offering a fresh perspective on the hot-button topic of gay marriage, directed by Yoruba Richen (in attendance) and starring Karess Taylor-Hughes (in attendance).
Closing the festival is TEST, a sexy and, at times, playful film following a young dancer as he navigates the thrills and perils of San Francisco in the 1980s. TEST won two well-deserved Grand Jury Awards at Outfest 2013 and is directed by Chris Mason Johnson (in attendance) and stars Scott Marlowe (in attendance). The festival is showcasing the International Spotlight -- WILL YOU STILL LOVE ME TOMORROW?, a madcap comedic romp from Taiwan about a closeted, introverted optometrist. The U.S Dramatic Spotlight is THE MOST FUN I'VE EVER HAD WITH MY PANTS ON, a surreal road movie from LA to Austin, directed by Austin native Drew Denny (in attendance) and starring Sarah Hagan (in attendance).
"I can't wait to bring my film to Austin, my hometown and the place where our movie's road trip journey ends," said Denny. "Polari will be an incredible homecoming for my film - and for me."
Additional highlights include: INTERIOR. LEATHER BAR., a sexually explicit homage to William Friedkin's CRUISING co-directed by, and starring, James Franco (127 HOURS, SPIDER-MAN); REACHING FOR THE MOON, an Elizabeth Bishop biopic detailing the poet's epic romance with architect Lota de Macedo Soares in the lush Brazilian countryside, directed by multi-award winning filmmaker Bruno Barreto (DONA FLOR AND HER TWO HUSBANDS, VIEW FROM THE TOP); GOD LOVES UGANDA, a galvanizing Sundance favorite that shows how self-righteous ministers from the U.S., who are largely discredited in their home country, have taken hold of Uganda's imagination, spreading their hateful messages and inducing politicians to put forward the country's infamous "kill the gays" legislation; WHO'S AFRAID OF VAGINA WOLF?, an uproarious lesbian meta-adaptation of the classic WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?, starring queer cinema giant Guinevere Turner (GO FISH, WATERMELON WOMAN); and IN THE NAME OF, a daring film about a repressed priest at an all-boys school in the Poland countryside that was this year's Berlianle Teddy Award Winner.
By popular demand, Polari is also highlighting three standouts from SXSW 2013: I AM DIVINE, Jeffrey Schwarz's beloved documentary about the notorious JOHN WATERS muse and fierce queen of the gay underground; PIT STOP, a sweet tale of small town Texas romance directed by Austin filmmaker Yen Tan (in attendance); and BEFORE YOU KNOW IT, an amusing and deeply humanistic documentary about three gay seniors navigating their golden years within three distinct queer communities. BEFORE YOU KNOW IT is directed by Austin filmmaker PJ Raval who will be in attendance along with surprise guests from the film.
These films, and many more, will screen at the Stateside at Paramount, Alamo Ritz, Violet Crown, Marchesa Hall and Theater and Studio 4D at the University of Texas at Austin. The full line-up for Polari26 can be found on-line at: www.polarifest.festivalgenius.com/2013/
About Polari Nonprofit Organization Polari (formerly AGLIFF) is the oldest film festival in Austin, Texas and the largest and longest-running LGBT film festival in the Southwest. Polari's mission is to build community and awareness through engaging, enlightening and innovative film programming. In addition to the annual film festival, Polari's other nonprofit programs include My Queer Movie, the Queer Youth Media Project, the Filmmaker Assistance Program, the Community Partnership Program and the Polari Family Screening Program.
Polari 2013 Membership Support Polari by becoming a member of AGLIFF Polari today at http://www.polarifest.com/memberships. Membership secures your registration for the Film Festival Program and special events, October 16-20, 2013. All memberships are tax deductible and directly benefit the Polari Nonprofit Organization's LGBT community programs.
Platinum: Frank, AT&T U-verse, Public School, HBO Gold: AIDS Services of Austin, State Theater at the Paramount, Alamo Drafthouse
Ketel One, Festival Genius, The Department of Radio-Television-Film at the University of Texas at Austin Silver: Garbo Salon, Hotel San José, Orbitz, St. Germain Bronze: Brass House, Here Media, Midtown Title, Star Center Gymnastics, Violet Crown, Austin Film Society, Curra's Grill, Cheer Up Charlie's, PostNet Far West, Social Communications, Mercury Mambo, Tresal Photography, Audi South Austin