Charlotte Pride’s 11th annual Reel Out Charlotte LGBTQ film festival kicks off with an opening reception on April 28. This year’s event will take place at Camp North End and will include a women’s reception, a Pride reception and a short-film showcase.
“Reel Out Charlotte is a film festival devoted to highlighting the experiences of LGBTQ people,” Daniel Valdez, president of the Charlotte Pride Board of Directors, wrote in a press release announcing this year’s featured films. “LGBTQ themes and storylines are still often left out or toned down in mainstream American cinema and outright censored in other places across the globe. We’re proud to present an opportunity for members of the local LGBTQ community to see our lives, our loves, our triumphs and our challenges uniquely played out on the big screen.”
The festival’s opening reception will include special guest Nava Mau, a transgender actor and director who will share a few words with the audience before showcasing her short film, Waking Hour.
The weeklong festival is set to feature several local and regional premieres including They, a 2017 drama focusing on the experiences of a non binary teenager from Chicago who explores their gender identity, and Rafiki, a feature length from Kenya about two women who fall in love.
Other notable films with regional premiere’s include Wild, a Cannes Film Festival entry depicting the life of a 22-year-old sex worker, and Gay Chorus Deep South, a documentary originally debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival that follows the Gay Men’s Chorus of San Francisco on a tour of the South.
Many screenings will precede panel discussions on topics including HIV/ AIDS in film and being trans in the military. Receptions held by Charlotte Latinx Pride, Charlotte Trans Pride, Charlotte Black Pride and PFLAG Charlotte will also provide opportunities for the Charlotte community to engage with local organizations dedicated to fostering a sense of unity and inclusivity in the Charlotte community.
Reel Out will also include several special events like Reel Out Charlotte’s Annual Short Films Showcase on May 1st, which allows attendees to vote for Viewer’s Choice.
Tickets to the festival will be available in a $40 all-access package that includes a pack of 10 tickets and additional benefits like luxury seating. For those only interested in attending one or two screenings, each individual film costs $5.