From October 23rd to 26th, be sure to catch the Ottawa LGBT Film Festival at the Bytowne Cinema and Saw Gallery. The festival, presented by Toronto-based non-profit organization Inside Out with Presenting Sponsor RBC Royal Bank, is celebrating its eighth year in Ottawa. The 2014 edition of the festival will screen 13 feature-length films and three short programs, and will highlight more than 35 individual films from around the world.
The award-winning film Tru Love will open the festival on October 23rd. The film, the debut directorial effort by Kate Johnston and Shauna MacDonald, won more than a dozen awards on the LGBT festival circuit over the summer, including Emerging Canadian Artist Award and Audience Award for Best Feature at the Toronto LGBT Film Festival. According to the festival’s Director of Programming Andrew Murphy, the film is a “modern lesbian classic” in which Johnston and MacDonald have crafted an “honest and rich portrayal of finding love no matter what your age.” Co-director and star Shauna MacDonald will be in attendance for the Ottawa premiere on the opening night of the festival.
Some of the other films to be featured at the festival include The Way He Looks (Hoje Eu Quero Voltar Sozinho) by Brazilian director Daniel Ribeiro. The film tells the story of the gentle evolution of friendship between Leonardo and Gabriel, “as each tries to find the courage to reveal their deeper feelings.” Ribeiro’s film won the Teddy Award for Best Feature at the 2014 Berlin Film Festival.
Other feature films to be screened include The Foxy Merkins (Madeleine Olnek – USA), 52 Tuesdays (Sophie Hyde – Australia), Appropriate Behaviour (Desiree Akhavan – USA), Land of Storms (Viharsarok) (Adam Csaszi – Hungary/Germany), Futuro Beach (Praia Do Futuro) (Karim Aïnouz – Brazil/Germany), Life Partners (Susanna Fogel – USA), and Lilting (Hong Khao – UK).
In the documentary category, director Nancy D. Kates of the United States submitted Regarding Susan Sontag, “an intimate study of one of the most influential and provocative thinkers of the 20th century.” Other submissions include Matt Shepard is a Friend of Mine (Michelle Josue – USA), Forbidden Love (Aerlyn Weissman and Lynne Fernie – Canada), and The Circle (Der Kreis) (Stefan Haupt – Switzerland/Germany).
According to Executive Director Scott Ferguson, the 2014 edition of the festival “truly represens the best in queer cinema from the past year. The scope and range of these films truly reflects the diversity, courage and extraordinary artistry of filmmakers from around the world and we are thrilled to bring these films to Ottawa audiences.”
Advance tickets are available now online through insideout.ca and in-person at Venus Envy (320 Lisgar Street, Ottawa). To find out more information and support the Ottawa LGBT Film Festival, be sure to visit the website, follow on Twitter, and like on Facebook.