In a ceremony that took place across social media this evening, the full line up for the 35th festival celebrating LGBTIQ+ stories was confirmed.

Enfant Terrible

Taking place online from the 17th to the 28th March, the festival is set to celebrate the best new work LGBTIQ+ cinema from around the world via BFI Player to UK-wide audiences.

As previously announced, the programme is set include the premieres of Phil Connell’s Jump,Darling as well as Harri Shanahan and Sian A. Williams’ Rebel Dykes and Peeter Rebane’s Firebird.

One of the themes at the centre of the festival this year will concentrate on strong representation of significant individuals and communities whose lives and work have had an impact on queer history and the ongoing fight for change and equality. This year’s programme celebrates and elevates individuals whose lives and accomplishments are perhaps less well known but who deserve to be championed, such as Gloria Allen, Connie Norman and Billy Tipton.

Highlights of the programme that celebrate these and many other individuals include:

·         A Los Angeles Act-Up organiser is remembered for her fierce resistance to both transphobia and the AIDS virus in AIDS DIVA: THE LEGEND OF CONNIE NORMAN (Dir. Dante Alencastre).

·         CURED (Dirs. Patrick Sammon, Bennett Singer) – This astonishingly rich documentary explores the campaign by key U.S. activists to remove homosexuality from the American Psychiatric Association’s definition of mental illness.

·         MAMA GLORIA,DirectorLuchina Fisher’s endearing documentary portrait shows how fighter, organiser and survivor Gloria Allen has become a local hero to younger Chicagoan trans women.

·         The fascinating story of pioneering trans jazz musician Billy Tipton is brought thrillingly to life in NO ORDINARY MAN (Dirs. Aisling Chin-Yee, Chase Joynt), a celebratory documentary portrait.

The festival has also been divided into three thematic strands: Hearts, Bodies and Minds.

The hearts strand of the festival will focus on  films about love, romance and friendship. Films set to feature in this segment include: Daniel Sánchez López’s Boy Meets Boy, Thomas Wilson-White’s The Greenhouse and Shirel Peleg’s Kiss Me Before it Blows Up.

Meanwhile, in the bodies section, the focus is on stories of sex, identity and transformation. This will include Alexa Bakony’s Colors of Tobi, Pete Murimi’s I am Samuel and Ali LeRoi’s The Obituary of Tunde Johnson.

The Minds element of the festival will concentrate on reflections on art, politics and community.  The films set to feature include:Oskar Roehler’s  Enfant Terrible, Eugen Jebeleanu’s Poppy Field and Luchina Fisher’s Mama Gloria.

There are also set to be exclusive Q&As and introductions with the filmmaking teams will be presented for each of the features. This year’s BFI Flare will also include Screen Talks via BFI YouTube and a discursive events programme, the details of which will be announced in the coming weeks. Plus a special online edition of the legendary BFI Flare Big Gay Film Quiz will take place for audiences to test their queer film knowledge.

BFI Flare: London LGBTIQ+ Film Festival will take place from the 17th to the 28th March, with tickets going on sale from the 2nd March. For more information visit: https://www.bfi.org.uk/flare.