Queer Screen’s 26th Mardi Gras Film Festival has searched high and low to create a powerful fusion of LGBTIQ+ characters, stories and filmmakers from all over world. The brilliance and the challenges of being queer will be screened from 13 – 28 February in Sydney before touring to Canberra, Parramatta, Lismore, Newcastle and the Blue Mountains in March and April.
The Festival boasts five world premieres, 75 Australian premieres and 15 Sydney premieres, screening 54 feature-length films and 66 short films across 70 sessions in Event Cinemas George Street and venues across Sydney.
Opening with Giant Little Ones from Canada in its Australian premiere. A coming-of-age film featuring Kyle MacLachlan and Maria Bello, it explores how 17-year-old Franky begins to question his sexuality after an incident at his birthday party. This touching drama looks at the pressure to pick a label when maybe you don’t need one.
Rafiki will close the Festival. A bold and powerful story about young lesbian love in a conservative society in Nairobi, it was the first Kenyan film selected for Cannes and was initially banned in its home country where homosexuality is still illegal.
Other highlights include, the Felix Maritaud double header in coming of age thriller Boys and the film that shocked Cannes, Sauvage, a Focus on Latin America including the World Premiere Gala screening of The Blonde One, a slow burn sexy drama from Argentina, the Australian Premiere of the much anticipated bio-pic Mapplethorpe, a nod to old Hollywood with Making Montgomery Clift and Scotty & the Secret History of Hollywood, important documentary from Tonga, Leitis in Waiting, romantic drama Snapshots and the Molly Shannon lead comedy Wild Night Nights with Emily.