The 25th season of the Connecticut Gay and Lesbian Film Festival which is taking place from June 1-9 mainly at Cinestudio on the campus of Trinity College, with closing night screenings at the Connecticut Science Center and Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art in downtown Hartford, promises to be an event of epic proportions and a smorgasbord of cinematic treats. If you haven’t ever sampled it, I highly recommend a taste test.
But don’t take my word for it… listen to the wisdom of dedicated volunteers who have watched over 200 films to find the right selections for this year’s silver showcase. I’d like to introduce you to one of these special behind- the- scenes cast of characters. By day, Mark Slitt is a Public Relations Manager at Cigna, Platnium sponsor of this year’s festival. Mark enjoys being a very active committee member for Out Film CT, the non-profit organization that produces the festival.
So what’s your favorite film in this year’s line-up?
That’s a hard question! I love Cloudburst, because I adore Olympia Dukakis and she’s just superb in this film. I also love Gayby because it’s so darn funny. And Jobriath A.D. is a really fascinating documentary that reveals a part of our history that most of us know nothing about. Among the shorts, dik is great. I love dik. What’s not to love about dik?
How long does the committee watch movies to get the choices we’ll be seeing?
The committee watches movies pretty much all year long. After the festival is over, we’ll have about a four to six week break and then we’ll start watching movies again, because we have to get started on the EROS festival in the fall. The thing that I personally find fascinating is that we all get along. I’ve been on committees where there’s politics, cliques, infighting. We have none of that. It’s just a bunch of really nice, friendly people who share a passion for film and a desire to put on really great festivals. It’s a labor of love.
You have always had a love affair with movies, right?
I love movies, I always have – not just for the stories they tell but also as works of art. Before joining this committee, I worked on the Hartford Jewish Film Festival for two years. It’s important to me to be involved in the LGBT community. For many years, while living in Dallas, I served on the board of my LGBT synagogue, including four years as president, which was an experience that shaped who I am today. Working on the film festival enables me to combine my love for film with my desire to serve my community. It’s a joyous experience, truly.
Diversity Works is truly proud to be a sponsor for this year’s event. Happy Anniversary to Mark, Out Film Director Shane Engstrom, and the awesome film family that puts together the festival. See you at the movies!
Dan (and Jenn!)