The Vancouver Queer Film Festival has unveiled the lineup for this year’s edition, which runs from August 10-20 at various locations.
Opening the festival, which is presented by Out On Screen, is Stronger Together, in which six short films will celebrate the diversity of the 2SLGBTQIA+ community. Those films range from the Canadian comedy Thriving: A Dissociated Reverie (which focuses on the experiences of non-binary, Black, disabled ex-sex worker Kitoko Mai) to the American-made Grocery List (in which a queer couple who just want to go grocery shopping end up dealing with a myriad of issues).
The Vancouver Queer Film Festival closes with Runs in the Family, where a father and his trans drag performer son take a road trip across South Africa to break the mother of the family out of rehab.
The 2023 Centrepiece Presentation will be American director Sharon “Rocky” Roggio’s documentary 1946: The Mistranslation That Shifted Culture. Tracing the origins of the Christian anti-gay movement back to 1946, the film questions whether there’s any valid biblical basis for queer and trans prejudice. 1946: The Mistranslation That Shifted Culture won the 2022 Audience Award at DOC NYC, becoming the most-viewed film in the fest’s history.
In total, the Vancouver Queer Film Festival will spotlight 92 films (24 features and 68 shorts) from 27 countries, with 31 making their Canadian premieres. Those films will screen in-person as well as digitally, for those living outside of the Lower Mainland.
Also taking place over the Vancouver Queer Film Festival’s 10-day run will be performances by 2SLGBTQIA+ folks, workshops, post-screening Q&As with filmmakers, curated short programs, and encore screenings of festival faves on August 20.
An RBC–sponsored Narrative Change Award, which includes a $5,000 cash prize, will go to the storyteller who “uses the power of cultural strategy to overturn outdated narratives, inspire change, and expand the audience’s perception of 2SLGBTQIA+ identities in their work.” All films in the festival are by 2SLGBTQIA+ storytellers.
“Our programming team used authentic and positive representation as our north star,” Out on Screen artistic director Charlie Hidalgo said in a release announcing the festival. “The media we consume shapes the cultural narrative about our communities and profoundly influences our emotional, political, and social landscapes. We embraced stories celebrating our freedom, joy and expansiveness, and are proud to present an empowering lineup that is a testament to the extraordinary visions of 2SLGBTQIA+ creators.”
When: August 10-20
Where: various locations around Vancouver