Reinventing the Reel (Canada | 2015, 20 minutes)
Directed by: Michael j Gorlick
"Reinventing the Reel" is a documentary short about contemporary independent film-makers' attempts to change the portrayal of LGBT characters in film. The film begins with a historical perspective of the big-studio Hollywood treatment of LGBT characters, and then shows how that portrayal has changed, and why is important that it continues to change.
This brief history is followed by an inside look into how specific independent filmmakers are attempting to breaking the chain of that negative history on a small scale. The documentary follows the journey of Casper Andreas, an American independent film-maker, as he directs and produces "Kiss Me, Kill Me" a murder-mystery feature film about a group of characters in West Hollywood who happen to identify as LGBT. In the film's story, their gayness comes secondary to the fact that they are authentically flawed human beings dealing with challenging life experiences separate from their sexuality. With the help of game-changing tools like crowd funding, film-makers like Casper Andreas can bypass the big studios and finance their films by accessing an already-existing audience.
According to the Contact Hypothesis Theory, the more times a viewer sees/interacts with a minority in film (preferably in varied depictions), the less prejudice they will have towards that group. The hope has always been that big Hollywood films would begin to include LGBT characters that had more reasons for being in the narrative than just their sexuality. The underlying message of "Reinventing the Reel" is that it may no longer be necessary to wait for that: like-minded individuals are now able to take the creative power into their own hands and bring their ideas to life with the support of a waiting and eager audience.