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Canada’s Inside Out Queer Festival announces projects for the seventh finance forum exclusive

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Source: Lucy Lu

Andrew Murphy

Canadian 2SLGBTQ+ film festival Inside Out has unveiled 11 projects to participate in this weekend’s seventh annual international finance forum, which is moving ahead after the end of the Hollywood strikes.

The two-day forum had been scheduled to run during Inside Out’s flagship festival in Toronto in May and now takes place from November 17-18.

The agenda includes in-person conversations and interactive panel discussions with queer filmmakers and producers, as well as one-on-one meetings with executives, and roundtable sessions on co-producing with Canada, and entertainment law and music rights.

Eight narrative and one documentary at various stages of development have been selected representing Canada, the US, UK, Italy, and South Africa, alongside two inaugural episodic series from Canada.

Projects include US narrative feature whatever, whatever, produced by Killer Films’ Mason Plotts (You Sing Loud, I Sing Louder) and Becca Standt. Kait Schuster’s feature directorial debut about a late-bloomer’s first queer relationship with a non-binary roller skating coach.

Benjamin-Shalom Rodriguez’s debut feature Bar Mitzvah Boy (USA) produced by Jordyn Barber is in post and centres on a desperate, horny seventh grader dreading his bar mitzvah; Granny Lee from Gabe Gabriel (Can-SA) and produced by Shant Joshi and Roelof Storm about a white-passing transfemme granny in Apartheid South Africa who befriends an affluent and conservative mother unaware she is on a crusade.

Nick Citton’s Hal & Charlie 1963 (Can) produced by Jason James follows two men who reunite after an affair 10 years prior; Savvas Stavrou’s 1981 Edinburgh-set Lovesong To Lavender Menace (UK) centres on a party boy and a bookworm who fall in love while setting up Scotland’s first queer bookshop and is produced by John McKay and Laura McBride.

What Ever Happened To Rose Elena? (USA) directed by Lorena Lourenco and produced by David Sarfati follows a young gay man who moves in with a legendary retired telenovela actress and discovers the experience is much darker than he expected; Frieda Luk’s Sacred Creatures (Can-It) is a darkly comedic exploration of faith produced by Ines Eisses, Raha Shirazi Chris Sanchez, and Frieda Luk; and Lu Asfaha’s They Echo (Can) produced by Fonna Seidu follows a woman who returns to tend to her dying mother.

The documentary feature is Intersex Justice (USA) directed by Aubree Bernier-Clarke which chronicles activists as they fight for issues like body autonomy and is produced by G. Chesler.

The first episodic series are Julianna Notten’s That’s Just Super about queer teens who gain superpowers and is produced by Bill Taylor and Michelle Mama; and Jose Lourenco and James Lourenco’s The Confetti Show produced by Natalie Urquhart follows a gregarious queer man who lets his depressive older brother move in with him and forces him to party.

The in-person conversations and interactive panel discussions will feature: Andrew Ahn (Spa Night, Driveways) and Symbolic Exchange producer Joe Pirro (We Grown Now, Driveways); Elegance Bratton (The Inspection) and producer Chester Algernal Gordon (Pier Kids); and Luis De Filippis and producer Jessica Adams (Something You Said Last Night).

Participating executives for one-on-one meetings are attending from Killer Films, IFC Films, Symbolic Exchange, Studiocanal, Bankside, mk2, Bel Media/CRAVE, Neon, Bleecker Street, CBC Films, and Elevation Pictures, among others.

“It has been a long year for so many facets of our creative industries, so we are very excited to be able to present our seventh edition of the Finance Forum before the end of the year,” said Inside Out’s co-head and artistic director Andrew Murphy.

“We exist to serve our queer creators, and do everything we can to help push this brilliant batch of projects forward from the development stage into financing and production.”

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