The Melbourne Queer Film Festival has launched its full 2019 program, featuring a massive 141 feature films, documentaries and short films.

This year’s MQFF will run from Thursday March 14 to Monday March 25 across ACMI, Village Jam Factory and Cinema Nova.

Opening the festival will be Papi Chulo, from Handsome Devil director John Butler, which stars Matt Bomer who, while on a work sabbatical, develops a relationship with migrant worker Ernesto.

MQFF 2019 will feature a number of world LGBTI cinema highlights, including Kenyan lesbian romantic drama Rafiki, French sex worker drama Sauvage, Marco Berger’s The Blonde One, and Hong Kong director Simon Chung’s I Miss You When I See You.

The festival will also screen a number of documentaries highlights the past and present queer world, from trans issues in TransMilitary, Becoming Colleen and Man Made to the queer creative icons in Making Montgomery CliftAntonio Lopez 1970: Sex, Fashion and Disco and Every Act of Life.

MQFF’s centrepiece screening this year will be Drew Droege’s Bright Colors and Bold Patterns, the filmed version of his off-Broadway smash hit play in which he plays a flamboyant guest at a Palm Springs wedding where attendees have been encouraged to not wear bright colours or bold patterns.

Droege will attend the screening as a guest of the festival to discuss the work and its exploration of internalised biases and prejudices among gay men.

As always, the festival will also screen tons of fabulous LGBTI short films in sessions like Queer First Nation Shorts, trans shorts in Desire and Resistance, as well as Guy on Guy ShortsAustralian ShortsGirl on Girl Shorts, and more.

This year also sees the inauguration of the ‘Pitch Pleez!’ initiative, allowing LGBTI filmmakers the chance to pitch their project ideas in front of an industry panel.

MQFF has also announced the winners of the ‘Keep the Vibe Alive’ competition, with Sam McGowan’s Fuming and Millie Hayes’ The Third Wheel announced as winners of the short film contest as part of a campaign to reduce smoking rates in the LGBTI community.

Melbourne Queer Film Festival 2019 will close with Jeremiah Terminator LeRoy, which stars Kristen Stewart and Laura Dern as the two people behind controversial literary figure JT LeRoy.

“The 2019 edition of MQFF is guaranteed to enthral whilst also casting a keen eye over LGBTIQ+ culture and its fascinating diversity,” said Program Director Spiro Economopoulos.

“With each year, the scope of queer cinema expands, tackling stories and exploring subjects, which may not have been possible in more conservative times.

We have truly entered a golden age of movie-making and feel both honoured and excited to be sharing such a thrilling line-up with our audience.”

Tickets for this year’s MQFF are current available through the members-only pre-sale, with general tickets on sale at 9am on Thursday February 14.

You can browse this year’s full program at mqff.org.au.

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