GAZE Launch: Your Dublin film festival programme is here!
Last night in Dublin saw the launch of the GAZE programme at The Light House cinema.
The GAZE Dublin International LGBT Film Festival celebrates 20 years when it takes over The Light House in Smithfield – a fully accessible building – between 2nd and 6th August next. Tickets are on sale online today at noon!
Hosted by Brendan Courtney, the launch began with a message from Uachtarán na hÉireann himself, President Michael D Higgins. A man of the arts in his own right, President Higgins stated, “We need to be mindful of the need to continue to promote diversity.” He added:
Events like this remind us of the importance of inclusivity, and of recognising and embracing diversity within our communities.
The GAZE festival has now become a key event on the LGBT social calendar. I wish you continued success with this important initiative and a very enjoyable twentieth anniversary.
I’m not sure if it’s a first, but this year’s festival opens with a lesbian film, the excellent Circumstance. We reviewed this film a while ago, and it’s obvious to see why the film is reserved for the gala opening night.
Set in Iran this movie has already won several awards, including a top audience award from the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. Since Circumstance was made, director Maryam Keshavarz has effectively been exiled from her homeland, where the Iranian authorities have also banned the film.
From the festival programme:
A powerful and moving Iranian feature about two teenage girls, their burgeoning sexuality and the dangers of being themselves in a tyrannical and patriarchal society, Circumstance “ripples with the indignant energy of youthful rebellion” (New York Times).
This is a film that doesn’t let go, doesn’t let up and doesn’t leave you very easily once the lights come up. Circumstance is a film to be watched in community and to be celebrated as a defiant expression of LGBT liberation.
If you can’t get to Dublin to see it, never fear: before the August bank holiday weekend, Circumstance will be screened around Ireland as part of POUTfest in two other locations: on 12th July as part of the Galway Film Fleadh, and on 29th July at Cork’s Triskel Arts Centre.
As well as Circumstance, ones to watch include: Mosquita Y Mari, the award winning Irish-made Hold On Tight, Mother Tongue, Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same, Trans, Wish Me Away, Facing Mirrors, The Mountain, Shorts for Girls, Sexing the Transman.
I was sorry not to see the much lauded Pariah in there, but a queer gal can’t have everything.
There’s a flurry of Irish films in the festival this year, which includes the Irish shorts on Monday, 6th August: Sometimes People…, F$C, The Civil Partnership Bill: Or how I learned to stop worrying and love gay marriage, Oddity, eleven eleven, and The Arrival.
Having the chats
There’ll also be interesting panel discussions and workshops, such as The Buck Angel Effect (Buck Angel will be in Dublin! At the festival!), What Is A Gay Film?, and Irish Shorts Q&A. And there’ll be the inaugural GAZE Film Awards 2012, so be sure to fill out all those feedback forms after each film!
There are several not-to-be-missed documentaries including the already mentioned Hold On Tight plus: Gone, Vito, United in Anger: A history of ACT UP, Wish Me Away, The Civil Partnership Bill: Or how I learned to stop worrying and love gay marriage, This Is Not A Dream, Married in Spandex and Carol Channing: Larger than life
Plus there’s an innovative screening of web-series The Outs, which sees GAZE examining its identity as a provider of LGBT film and what that means and entails.
And, to rest your eyes and exercise your butts, GAZE has a host of social events happening throughout the festival:
GAZE outside the picture house
Opening Night Gala
Thursday, 2nd August
GAZE 20th Birthday Party
Friday, 3rd August
Saturday Night at the GAZE Festival Club
Saturday, 4th August
Saturday, 4th August
Half-price entry with your GAZE Saturday ticket stubs
GAZE Goes Glam Rock
Sunday, 5th August
Sunday, 5th August
Half-price entry with your GAZE Sunday ticket stubs
Closing Night Gala
Monday, 6th August
Plus! There’ll be freebies! In addition to the screening of The Outs and some of the social events listed above, the amazing Weekend will be screened as a free exhibition, which can be viewed at The Light House for the duration of the festival.
This year’s festival includes an impressive range of films from a myriad of countries, by a myriad of film makers and exploring a myriad of themes.
GAZE in numbers
4 shorts programmes
1 web show
1 panel discussion
8 film makers’ Q&As
5 mixed parties
17 film making guests arriving in Dublin
20 countries represented in the festival
Over 2,800 minutes – or almost 50 hours – of LGBT film
Brendan Courtney kicked off the GAZE launch proceedings
Festival chair, Denis Dermody, thanking about a million people
Festival programmer, David Mullane, with the numbers and details
Festival manager, Noel Sutton, rounds the evening off