Transgender film festivals fulfill important cultural roles in our society by creating a stage for filmmakers from around the world to showcase their short and feature length films and network with others in the industry; by reflecting the identities, challenges and triumphs of trans and gender-nonconforming people; and by helping mainstream audiences appreciate and recognize transgender identities and issues through the film medium. While queer and LGBT film events are much more predominant on the festival circuit, there is a growing number of vibrant trans film festivals that are captivating movie lovers of all persuasions. Here’s a list of upcoming trans film festivals, plus others to keep an eye on for 2014.
Gender Reel Festival
September 19-21, 2013
The first and only film and performance art festival dedicated to enhancing the visibility of gender non-conforming and transgender people to take place in four cities across the U.S.
The San Francisco Transgender Film Festival
November 8-10, 2013
San Francisco, CA, US
3 days of screenings, founded in 1997.
Transgender Film Festival
November 16-17, 2013
Salem, Tamil Nadu, India
15 to 20 short films
Jointly organized by Nadodi Film Society and Bharathi Kannamma Trust.
LA Transgender Film Fest
Los Angeles, CA, US
Founded in 2009, expanded in 2010 and again in 2011 to include a full day of screenings, plus an awards show. The 2012 festival featured three days of film screenings.
Trans Film Festivals From Earlier This Year
Watch for these trans film festivals to return in 2014!
1st Sydney Transgender International Film Festival
March 18-20, 2013
Australia’s only film festival dedicated to Transgender film producers and content providers from around the world.
2014 date: March 23-25
Transgender Film Festival
March 21 – 23, 2013
Divergenti Festival del Cinema Trans
May 2-5, 2013
Italy’s first and only trans film festival.
TransScreen: Amsterdam Transgender Film Fest
May 8-12, 2013
Translations: Seattle Transgender Film Festival
May 9-12, 2013
Seattle, WA, US
Queer Film Festivals
The queer film festivals that screen trans films are too numerous to mention. Festivals like Boston’s LGBT Film Festival in May (which featured trans programming co-sponsored by MTPC), Vancouver’s Queer Film Festival in August, and the Chéries–Chéris festival in Paris in October are just a few examples. For more, see The Big Queer Film Festivals List and FilmFestivals.com.
Notable Mention: While not exactly a festival, Toronto’s TransFilmSeries showcases works created by, starring, and/or speaking to the politics of trans communities.
Know of any other Trans Film Festivals? Leave a comment below!