The Centrepiece Gala will be the Canadian Premiere of Vincent Gagliostro’s debut feature, After Louie, starring Alan Cumming and Zachary Booth. The World Premiere of writer-director Tom Gustafson’s film adaptation of the musical Hello Again will close out the Festival.
Based on the 1994 musical, Hello Again stars Audra McDonald, Martha Plimpton, Cheyenne Jackson, T.R. Knight, Rumer Willis, Jenna Ushkowitz, Nolan Gerard Funk, Sam Underwood, Tyler Blackburn, and Al Calderon. The original musical was inspired by La Ronde, a play by Arthur Schnitzler, which follows ten people of various backgrounds, and the love and lust that guide them through several different eras of New York City history.
Gustafson’s films have won over 40 awards and screened at more than 200 film festivals. His feature directorial debut, the celebrated musical fantasy, Were the World Mine, was chosen by The New York Times as Critics’ Pick.
Vincent Gagliostro is a New York artist known for pushing buttons, especially as an AIDS activist in the 1980s and ’90s. At the centre of After Louie is Sam (Alan Cumming), whose life has followed a similar trajectory to Gagliostro’s own.
While dredging up buried memories and resentments to make a film about a deceased friend, Sam gets caught up in a relationship with Braeden (Zachary Booth, last seen at Inside Out in Ira Sachs’s Keep the Lights On). At first critical of the young man for his generation’s failure to appreciate how easy they have it, Sam slowly realizes that he has much to learn about what gay life is like today.
Amid the arguments over politics, loss, aging, white privilege and the dark side of gay sexuality, After Louie offers up a pervasively wicked sense of humour and a big, generous, survivor’s heart.
As an extra bonus before the screening and only for ticket holders of the Centrepiece Gala of After Louie, Inside Out will host a free Gala Reception at the Artscape Sandbox.
Festival goers will be among the first to see a long list of fresh features offered by award-winning filmmakers and their emerging counterparts in the Premieres programme. Highlights include the World Premiere of Hooked, the debut feature from Instagram star Max Emerson who writes, directs, and stars in the film about the complicated, timely exploration of issues that plague LGBTQ youth; the North American Premiere of Jurgen Ureña’s Hold Me Like Before, a Costa Rican take on Tangerine that captures an intelligent and intimate part of Costa Rica that is rarely portrayed on film; the North American Premiere of Neil Triffett’s debut feature, Emo The Musical, a cheerfully subversive take on Romeo and Juliet tale of teenage star-crossed lovers that swaps warring families for battling high school bands; the Canadian Premiere of Albert Alarr’s A Million Haps Nows, featuring soap opera stars Crystal Chappell (Days of Our Lives) and Jessica Leccia (One Life to Live), the fan-favourite twosome on Guiding Light, who reunite in this film as a couple facing an uncertain future.
The Toronto LGBT Film Festival runs for 11 days (May 25 to June 4), and draws crowds of more than 32,500 to screenings, artist talks, panel discussions and parties that showcase more than 175 films from Canada and around the world.
Click here for a link to the Toronto LGBT Film Festival and other May 2017 film festivals.