Original Productions Include Kimberly Reed’s Prodigal Sons and Susan Muska and Greta Olafsdottir’s Edie & Thea: A Very Long Engagement
New York, April 22, 2010 – Sundance Channel celebrates Gay Pride Month in June with DOCday programming dedicated to films representing the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) community. Airing Monday nights at 8:00pm et/pt, the event includes three DOCday premieres.
In dedicating its primetime DOCday spotlight to Pride programming, Sundance Channel will present the U.S. television premieres of two original productions: Kimberley Reed’s Prodigal Sons; and Susan Muska and Greta Olafsdottir’s Edie & Thea: A Very Long Engagement. In Prodigal Sons, filmmaker Reed attempts to re-establish a relationship with her adopted brother, a troubled man still resentful about being overshadowed by his younger sibling – the boy Reed used to be. Winner of the Best Documentary Audience Award at the 2009 Outfest, Edie & Thea: A Very Long Engagement is an inspiring portrait of a lesbian couple who finally achieve their dream of marrying – 42 years after getting engaged. Sundance Channel’s Pride DOCday premieres lead off with Ron David and Stewart Halpern’s delightful Pageant, which goes behind the scenes to follow five gorgeous female impersonators competing for the title of Miss Gay America.
Sundance Channel’s Pride DOCday schedule as follows:
Monday, June 7 at 8:00pm
Pageant (U.S. Television Premiere) – Directed by Ron David and Stewart Halpern. This joyous documentary goes behind the scenes at the 34th Miss Gay America contest, where 52 ordinary gentlemen go to extraordinary lengths in competing for the crown. Hormones and surgical enhancements are forbidden; each contestant relies on the art of illusion. The movie follows five of the most talented and beautiful female impersonators as they vie for the prize, cheered on by husbands, mothers, sons and little brothers.
Monday, June 14 at 8:00pm
For the Bible Tells Me So – Directed by Daniel Karslake. Combining scholarly inquiry with real-life stories, this acclaimed documentary makes a humane, lucid argument for reconciling homosexuality and Biblical scripture. Karslake profiles five mainstream American Christian families – including those of former House Majority leader Richard Gephardt and Anglican Bishop Gene Robinson – who grappled with questions of faith, sexuality, choice and love when their gay sons and daughters came out to them. The film tackles the anti-gay arguments of Biblical literalists, examining oft-cited verses and stories with the expert input of such respected theologians as Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Reverend Peter Gomes of Harvard, Orthodox Rabbi Steve Greenberg and Reverend Dr. Laurence Keene of Disciples of Christ. 2008 GLAAD Award for Outstanding Documentary; 2007 Audience Award, Best Documentary at the Seattle International Film Festival.
Monday, June 21 at 8:00pm
Prodigal Sons (Original Production/U.S. Television Premiere) – Directed by Kimberley Reed. This critically acclaimed documentary explores themes of identity, gender and sibling rivalry as it traces the paths of three siblings from Montana: Reed, a transgender woman; her younger, gay brother Todd; and their older, adopted brother Marc. Returning to Montana for her high school reunion, Reed is nervous about how she will be received by the classmates who knew her as football quarterback Paul McKerrow. But while Reed’s doubts are quickly assuaged, the fault lines between her and Marc – the unlucky, overshadowed, misfit brother – are equally quick to reappear. Hoping to help her troubled sibling, Reed attempts to untangle the family’s complex history – a task that takes a strange turn when Marc learns that he is the biological grandson of Orson Welles and Rita Hayworth.
Monday, June 28 at 8:00pm
Edie & Thea: A Very Long Engagement (Original Production/U.S. Television Premiere) – Directed by Susan Muska and Greta Olafsdottir. Great love stories often begin with a moment of instant attraction – and such was the case with Edie Windsor and Thea Spyer, who met in New York’s West Village in the early 1960s. They soon became "engaged," though the idea of a civil marriage for gay and lesbian couples was unthinkable at the time and would not come to pass for another four decades. As the two soul mates prepare at last to wed, they look back on their lives together, the battles they have fought and the changes they have seen.
About Sundance Channel
Under the creative direction of Robert Redford, Sundance Channel is the television destination for independent-minded viewers seeking something different. Bold, imaginative and uncompromising, Sundance Channel offers audiences a diverse and engaging selection of films, documentaries and original programs. Launched in 1996, Sundance Channel is a subsidiary of Rainbow Media Holdings LLC. Sundance Channel operates independently of the non-profit Sundance Institute and the Sundance Film Festival, but shares the overall Sundance mission of encouraging artistic freedom of expression. Sundance Channel’s website address is www.sundancechannel.com.
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