Queer superheroes, queer films from around the world, and some very good news from OkCupid fill this week’s Good and Gay to the brim with goodness—and who couldn’t use some more good and gay news in times like these?
Tessa Thompson reiterates commitment to queer representation in Marvel films
In an interview with Ramy Youssef for Variety, queer actor Tessa Thompson has doubled down on Marvel’s commitment to queer superheroes and queer representation in coming Marvel Cinematic Universe films. “The truth is these movies travel globally in such huge ways, and if you can represent people that are of color, if you can represent people with disabilities, if you can represent the LGBTQIA community inside of these films, it’s a pretty big deal.” She continued, “I think it’s really important for everybody, but particularly young people, to be able to show up to those movies and see projections of themselves, so I’m really excited that we’re able to push the bounds of that, and that I’m able to do that with Valkyrie, because there’s so many cool queer characters in the comic books and they should have a place on screen.”
Ife, Nigeria’s first pro-lesbian movie, set to release
Pamela Adie is a queer rights activist and filmmaker who is about to release Nigeria’s first pro-lesbian movie, Ife. The film follows Ife and Adaora who fall in love and struggle through life as a same-sex couple in Nigeria. And while that story alone is worth telling, the fact that the filmmakers want to change the narrative in Nollywood (a colloquial name for the Nigerian film industry) around queer people is something worth celebrating. “The idea was just to show that we are normal people who fall in love, who have their hearts broken, who break hearts, who have troubles, who triumph. We also aim to increase the visibility of the community, to tell the lesbian story too and to drive social acceptance,” Adie said.
It’s important to remember that same-sex relationships are still illegal in Nigeria and punishable by jail sentences of 10-14 years. Furthermore, Nigerian censors have threatened to “track down” the producers of the film. It’s certainly a daunting and disheartening situation, but Adie is committed to telling LGBTQ stories.
The trailer for the film will be out July 15, so make sure to check it out.
The new Batwoman will be the first Black Batwoman—and she’ll be played by bisexual actor Javicia Leslie
In more queer superhero news, the CW announced earlier this week that they’ve found their new Batwoman for Season 2: Javicia Leslie! Leslie, who has appeared in God Friended Me and Always a Bridesmaid, will play Ryan Wilder. Wilder lives in her van with a plant and is an out lesbian. Leslie is openly bisexual and told the Hollywood Reporter, “I am extremely proud to be the first Black actress to play the iconic role of Batwoman on television, and as a bisexual woman, I am honored to join this groundbreaking show which has been such a trailblazer for the LGBTQ+ community.” We’re excited to see Leslie’s Batwoman and how she grapples with a city divided by wealth and greed in 2021.
OkCupid now allows all users to choose their pronouns
In 2018, OkCupid rolled out the ability to list pronouns for people who didn’t identify with a binary gender, but now the dating app is allowing any user to list their pronouns regardless of their identity. It’s a surprisingly heartening move to normalize listing pronouns and create a safer environment for trans and nonbinary users. “For many people, especially non-binary and transgender daters, there’s nothing more personal than our names and pronouns,” Michael Kaye, OkCupid’s global communications manager told Mashable. “We’re hoping to create an even more inclusive space for everyone who lives outside of traditional expectations of gender expression and identity.”
UK student Amy Begent creates a beautiful bisexual tribute to her supportive dad
In an adorable and empowering stop motion animation film “Spud,” Loughborough University student Amy Begent explores how she learned to accept her bisexuality because of her father’s support. About her work, Amy writes “Upon recent self-reflection, I have learnt that my own sexuality is not confined to direct acts relating to it, but rather I feel it involves my whole lived experience. Since reaching this conclusion my work has become an exploration of the past in which my relationship with my dad is significant. I extract key moments, from the personal memory of ‘coming out’ to him, to the more relatable memories of bike rides and picnics. It is an ode to self-acceptance and an ode to my Dad in aiding that process.”
If you could use a little something to warm your heart, make sure to check out the film.