PrideArts aims to find ‘new voices, new artists’ via Queer film festival

28 short films — and a feature film — from eight different countries will be shown over three separate programs over the four-week festival.

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“Boy Meets Boy” is the PrideArts International Queer Film Festival’s feature film.

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A film festival exploring the range of queer life will launch Sunday.

PrideArts, a Chicago-based LGBTQ+ theater and film company, announced its four-week streaming festival consisting of 28 short films — and a feature film — from eight different countries. They’ll be shown over three separate programs of approximately two hours per program, with each program streaming for one week.

The festival, which takes place July 18-Aug. 14, will include themes in drama, comedy, online dating, dance, and Star Trek fandom, among others. 

“God’s Daughter Dances,” “As Simple As That,” and “Roadkill” are among the festival’s highlighted short films, along with “Boy Meets Boy,” the feature film.

“What’s interesting about the three short programs is that each of them is quite a mix of things that are either family stories or uplifting stories, or gay stories, or lesbian stories. In some ways, you want the label to go away,” said David Zak, the festival’s curator. “You just want to have a really, really interesting story that’s well told in 20 minutes or less.”


“As Simple As That,” is one of the 28 short films that’s a part of the PrideArts International Queer Film Festival.

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Zak says PrideArts’ version of a film festival will be different than most.

“Unlike a lot of film festivals our films are all up online for a week,” said Zak. “In this format, you have all week to see the different programs; there’s three different short film programs. … There have been queer films for decades, but there are some themes that come back more regularly than others. We’re trying to find new voices, new artists, new countries in some instances that are sharing their own particular story. 

“And we’re excited to be able to show Chicago and the world that people can watch from wherever they are in the world. That’s an interesting thing about being online. If you’re a filmmaker in Korea, or in Brazil, or Germany, or Mexico, you can still sign in and watch your film as part of this festival.”

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