SQIFF set to return to Glasgow and beyond

The full programme for the 2017 Scottish Queer International Film Festival has been announced. Expanded over five days, SQIFF will host 40 events at venues across Glasgow from Wednesday 27 September to Sunday 1 October, with pre-festival screenings taking SQIFF across Scotland, from Dundee to Stornoway.

The third annual celebration of the best and boldest in queer filmmaking will open and close with two major Scottish premieres. Queer filmmaking hero Bruce LaBruce will be in Glasgow to introduce his latest film The Misandrists on Wednesday 27th September and on Sunday 1st October the festival closes with the first Scottish screening of Signature MoveJennifer Reeder and Fawia Mirza's hilarious and honest look at the queer Muslim experience, love, family and female Mexican wrestling which garnered huge buzz at this year's SXSW.

Signature Move

Across five days, SQIFF will host 40 screenings, workshops and inclusive parties at venues across Glasgow. Highlights include:

  • Queer lives taking centre stage with a host of feature documentaries including Chavela (28 Sep), a fascinating look at the life of legendary Mexican ranchera singer Chavela Vargas, who defied all social expectations, revolutionised music and romanced a series of celebrated women, including Frieda Kahlo; Carlos Jáuregui: The Unforgettable Fag (29 Sep), the irresistible story of the first leader of the pioneering Argentine Homosexuality Community and FREE CeCe! (1 Oct)following the fate of trans woman CeCe McDonald, who’s incarceration for defending her life led to support from high-profile activists including Orange Is The New Black star Laverne Cox, who produced the film.
  • Looking Awry, a focus on how bisexual desire is represented on the big screen, from well-known Hollywood thrillers to queer underground filmmaking. As well as screenings of Gregg Araki’s ‘Beverley Hills 90210 on speed' Nowhere (30 Sep) and Sheila McLaughlin's dissection of queer jealousy She Must Be Seeing Things (1 Oct), Jacob Engelberg will host an eye-opening illustrated talk through cinematic invocations of bisexuality (30 Sep).

She Must Be Seeing Things

  • Handpicked showcases of short films from around the world and right on our doorstep, including a variety of stories surveying the trans experience in Switching Teams (30 Sep), a bunch of Defiant Dykes (30 Sep) proudly rejecting the demands of both hetero and queer cultures and Queer Scotland III (1 Oct), an array of the most exciting queer filmmaking happening in Scotland.
  • The return of the hugely popular Feminist Porn Night (29 Sep), featuring an award-winning slice of hot queer Berlin vampire action in Enactone, with director Sky Deep in attendance. This year, SQIFF are also teaming up with the Glasgow School of Art Pornography Society for M4M (30 Sep), a night of vivid, lurid and fluid queer sex on camera, including rare archive clips from prominent gay porn company productions.
  • A celebration of the life and work of Glasgow-based artist, activist, drag king and educator, Diane Torr (1 Oct), who sadly passed away earlier this year. Includes a chance to see Katarina Peters’ feature-length documentary Man For A Day, filmed at one of Diane's renowned gender workshops in Berlin.

Diane Torr - Man For A Day

  • We Are Failing (28 Sep), an evening inspired by Jack Halberstam’s book The Queer Art of Failure which explores how failure can be embraced as a form of resistance to the demands of heterosexual, capitalist society. A night to celebrate and assert our right to fail at life as individuals and communities, where audiences can feel free to be as awkward, depressed and disillusioned as they like.
  • Gaysian Superheroes (30 Sep), a showcase of the work of two British- South Asian queer women filmmakers across different generations - activist and director Pratibha Parmar, who’s groundbreaking Khush (1991) portrays lesbian women and gay men in India and the Indian diaspora and emerging digital media artist Seema Mattu.
  • A series of free workshops from leading industry professionals designed for LGBTQ+ creatives at any stage in their career, including a full-day masterclass with Emmy-nominated director Catherine Gund (30 Sep), body positive porn filmmaking with the award-winning Sky Deep (29 Sep) and a guide to collaborative, low-budget filmmaking with Lasse Långström (28 Sep).
  • Two huge dance parties courtesy of local heroes Free Pride who’ll be getting Glasgow's finest LGBTQ+ DJs on the decks till 3am at The Art School (Fri 29 Sep) and the one-night-only return of Lock Up Your Daughters with a Babadook Ball at Drygate Brewing Co (30 Sep), promising fresh queers, craft beers and butt-thumping beats.

Tickets to all screenings at SQIFF Festival Hub the CCA, Glasgow Women's Library and Transmission are priced on a new sliding scale from free to £8, an honesty scheme which allows audiences to pay what they can based on their personal circumstances and keeps the festival accessible for all. All SQIFF venues are wheelchair accessible, all screenings feature English language subtitles or captions and many events are BSL interpreted.

Last Men Standing - production still

As a teaser to the 2017 festival, SQIFF will be hitting the road, bringing a selection of fine queer movies to venues across Scotland (including Dundee, Aberdeen and Stornaway) from 21 - 26 September.

Highlights include an unmissable look at San Francisco's great chronicler in The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin at An Lanntair, Stornoway on 23 September and Eden Court, Inverness on 24 September and Don't Look At Me That Way, a revolutionary German-Mongolian romantic drama at DCA, Dundee on 22 September, Belmont Filmhouse, Aberdeen and Edinburgh Filmhouse on 23 September and CCA, Glasgow on 24 September. The Edinburgh screening will feature a post-film Q&A with programmer Jacob Engelberg and academic Maria Pramaggiore to mark Bi Visibility Day 2017.

"We are really pleased to bring SQIFF to audiences in Scotland for a third year, offering a unique selection of queer cinema and an ethos of challenging barriers to accessing the arts. Expanding to five days this year is an achievement for us and we also have more filmmaker and artist guests than before travelling to take part in the Festival. As always, our focus is to provide a space for LGBTQ+ communities to explore their creativity, make connections, and feel welcome at an event designed to meet their needs.” say the SQIFF Team.

Why Beautiful Thing Is As Powerful As Ever

Jennifer Armitage, Screen Officer at Creative Scotland said: “Creative Scotland is proud to support the Scottish Queer International Film Festival 2017. SQIFF’s vision to celebrate LGBTQI cinema in all its forms has seen it grow into an internationally significant festival that helps to meet the need for greater equality, diversity and inclusion in Screen culture. This year’s expanded programme is full of ground breaking films and innovative events, and we are delighted that the festival will be hitting the road with a series of screenings before the festival starts, enabling audiences from communities across Scotland the opportunity to get a taste of the SQIFF programme and celebrate its accessibility and inclusivity.”

Tickets to all events are on sale now at www.sqiff.org.

SQIFF is funded by Creative Scotland and FilmHub Scotland, with support from Loch Fyne Ales.

Media contacts

For tickets, images and interviews please contact Ruth Marsh on 07824468396 / ruth.marshpr@gmail.com


SQIFF (Scottish Queer International Film Festival) was formed with the aim of adding to the exciting and growing amount of queer film stuff happening around Scotland. Its goal is to get people watching, talking about, and making more queer films. SQIFF wants to screen movies that people might not otherwise get a chance to see and to create inspiring and informative events alongside challenging inequality and barriers to accessing the arts. SQIFF is not-for-profit and run by the Festival Coordinator with assistance from the committee. SQIFF are an organisation by queer communities for queer communities.

About Creative Scotland

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here.  We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life.  We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery. For further information about Creative Scotland please visit www.creativescotland.com.  Follow us @creativescots and www.facebook.com/CreativeScotland

About FilmHub Scotland

As part of the BFI's Film Audience Network, Film Hub Scotland (FHS) is one of nine Hubs set up across the UK to extend film choice, increase and broaden film audiences, and enhance opportunities for audiences to engage with and learn about film. FHS is led by Scottish Film which comprises Scotland's key cultural cinemas and festivals. www.filmhubscotland.com