Outfest Fusion ‘Matters,’ Kicks Off March 9 at Egyptian

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The 15th Outfest Fusion LGBTQ People of Color Film Festival will be held March 9-13 at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, as well as in various locations throughout Los Angeles.

Presented by Showtime, the five days of film screenings, filmmaker Q&As, filmmaking workshops and networking events celebrate the diversity of the LGBT community.

“We have seen an alarming number of statistics reporting an increase in violence against people of color and LGBTQ persons,” said Outfest Executive Director Christopher Racster. “This sad fact reminds me why Outfest Fusion matters.”

Racster said that the power of LGBTQ stories “create spaces for understanding, open dialogs, and enlighten each other to the universalities that make us human while celebrating those aspects that make us unique.”

Outfest Fusion will kick off on Friday, March 9, 2018, with the annual Fusion Gala at the historic Egyptian Theatre, featuring a collection of Queer People of Color (QPOC) shorts and a special performance by rapper-performance artist Mykki Blanco at the Fusion Gala After-Party.

Weekend highlights include the LA premieres of Mr Gay Syria, a documentary following the lives of two gay Syrian refugees as they struggle to restore their lives; the quirky comedy White Rabbit, one of this year’s Sundance NEXT standouts starring Vivian Bang, and Shakedown, a documentary exploring the LA strip club that celebrated female desire and sexuality within the African-American community. 

Also of note is the world premiere of the dramatic short, Happy Birthday, Marsha!, about iconic transgender artist and activist, Marsha P. Johnson, followed by the groundbreaking episodic series America in Transition, which explores the relationships, family, and social issues faced by trans people of color across the United States

Showtime’s “The Chi” will also be screening an unaired episode immediately followed by a Q&A.
On Monday, March 12, Fusion will host a screening at Plaza De La Raza of the feel-good campy musical comedy Holy Camp!, based on the cult play “LA LLAMADA.”

The night will end with the LatinXplosive shorts program, featuring films from directors Pedro Jorge, Candy Guinea, Armando Ibañez, Kase Pena, Nance Messino and Cole Santiago.

“With provocative films coming to us from major festivals around the world, Fusion continues to be a home for vibrant voices within the QPOC diaspora,” said Outfest’s Director of Programming Lucy Mukerjee.

Outfest Fusion will also host seven workshops at various locations around Los Angeles. Led by Outfest QPOC alumni filmmakers, classes include Collaboration in Filmmaking, Worldbuilding Feminist Futures and a masterclass with QPOC writers on writing & pitching. These interactive classes and workshops will be instructed by Chanelle Tyson, Paisley Smith, Caitlin Conlen, Q. Allan Brocka, Michelle Badillo, Steven Canals, Chuck Hayward, Kase Pena, Henry Alberto, Abel Soto, Ean Weslynn, Deondray Gossfield and Quincy LeNear Gossfield.

Outfest Fusion rounds out with the Fusion Finale on Tuesday, March 13, at the California African-American Museum for the One Minute Movie Contest, where all the submissions will be screened and prizes awarded.  This year’s theme is Keeping Silent/Speaking Truth. Winners of the One Minute Movie Contest will be invited to play their film at Outfest Los Angeles LGBT Film Festival in July.

As previously announced, shorts that win awards at Outfest Los Angeles now qualify for the Academy Awards.

Outfest Fusion 2018 is presented by Showtime. Premiere Sponsors include Comcast NBCUniversal and Gilead. Supporting Sponsors are Angel City Brewery, Deluxe, Ramada West Hollywood and The Fight Magazine. Media Sponsors include Adelante, Lesbian News, Q Life, and Revry.

For complete listings and to purchase tickets, log on to www.Outfest.org/fusion2018
 or call (213) 480-7088. 

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