A groundbreaking documentary about gay youth in America, a look at gay subtexts in a popular mainstream film, and an appearance by Frank DeCaro (Comedy Central's The Daily Show) will highlight the fifth annual Pridefest of USU's Gay and Lesbian Student Resource Center.
The festival, which runs Feb. 9-14, also is sponsored by Cache Valley community members as well as USU gay and lesbian alumni. This year's offerings represent Something Queer in Everything I See, a theme emphasizing the prominent cultural impact of the gay and lesbian communities, according to Cy Martz, a student majoring in public relations and festival coordinator.
"We want to let people know that gay culture affects everybody's life, whether they recognize it or not," Martz added.
The festival will feature a wide range of documentaries, feature-length and short films, and guest speakers designed to provide a greater cultural awareness of the impact of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered community. All events for Pridefest 5 will be in the Taggart Student Center Auditorium.
"The festival has traditionally provided the motivation for individuals to become more comfortable and open about their sexual identity," Tim Keller, festival founder and programming director, said, adding that he hopes that USU faculty will encourage students to attend the various events.
Among this year's offerings is Jim in Bold, a 2003 documentary about Jim Wheeler, a young gay poet and artist who was the victim of homophobic attacks during his childhood in rural Pennsylvania. In the aftermath of Wheeler's 1997 suicide, three members of Young Gay America, inspired by the poet's work, traveled across the country interviewing gay youths about their experiences. The film will be screened at 8:30 p.m. Feb. 9. Proceeds from the screening will go to the Gay-Straight Student Alliance at Logan High School.
X2, the hit 2003 sequel to X-Men will be screened at 8:30 p.m. Feb. 11. Audience members will be asked to identify and discuss examples of gay sub-texts in mainstream films, Martz said.
The festival will conclude with Flaming Screens, an evening of clips and comedy featuring DeCaro, whose outrageous "Out at the Movies" reviews were a favorite on Comedy Central's The Daily Show for seven years.
Known for his pop culture punditry on many VH1 shows -- most notoriously on "Britney vs. Christina" -- DeCaro is a frequent contributor to such publications as TV Guide, The New York Times and The Advocate. His 1996 book, A Boy Named Phyllis: A Suburban Memoir, was called "hilarious" by Vanity Fair.
Tickets can be purchased in advance or at the door. The cost will be $3 for matinee documentaries and $5 for feature films. Festival passes also can be purchased for $25 for all screenings, or $30 which includes the DeCaro show. Student discounts also are available.
More information and a complete festival schedule can be found at http://www.usu.edu/pride/pridefest5