The Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival has a long and storied history. Since it’s opening in 1996 with the gay coming of age film Beautiful Thing, the festival has grown to become the largest of its kind in the PNW, and is one the country’s premier queer film festivals.

The folks at Three Dollar Bill Cinema are pulling out all the stops this year’s festival, their 20th, featuring the PNW debuts of some amazing queer films. If you’re a true queer cinephile, then you’ll probably just want to get a festival pass and see everything on the schedule. If you’re not able to do that, though, you’re in luck. Just check out our handy list of recommendations to be sure and catch what promises to be some of the best selections on the bill.

Freeheld, featuring Julianne Moore and Ellen Paige


Thursday, October 8 / 7:15pm
SIFF Cinema Egyptian

The festival kicks off with the PNW debut of Freehold from screenwriter Ron Nyswaner and director Peter Sollett. Featuring Oscar®-winning actress Julianne Moore, and out-and-proud Ellen Page, the film is a “A moving and inspiring true-life story” based based on the Oscar®-winning short documentary of the same name.


Drag Becomes Him

Friday, October 9 / 7pm
SIFF Cinema Egyptian

Local filmmaker Alex Berry brings his lovingly made, behind the scenes look at Seattle drag star Jinkx Monsoon. If you missed the Seattle debut, now’s your chance to catch the film on the big screen again. Berry and Jinkx, along with producer Basil Shadid, will be in attendance.


Capitol Hill 2

Saturday, October 10 / 9:15pm
SIFF Cinema Egyptian

It’s a Jinkx double-feature, with the long-awaited debut of the second season of Wes Hurley’s Capitol Hill Series. This showing promises to be a who’s who of queer Seattle celebrities, and is not to be missed. Hurley and Waxie Moon will be in attendance.


Beautiful Something

Sunday, October 11 / 7pm
SIFF Cinema Egyptian

Writer-director Joseph Graham brings us a film loosely based on his own experiences back in 1990’s Philadelphia. Critics have called it edgy and sensual, and it’s been applauded for it’s unapologetic take on gay sexuality. Graham will be in attendance, along with star Colman Domingo.


Being Me: Trans Shorts Program

Tuesday, October 13 / 7pm
Northwest Film Forum

This year’s Trans Films Shorts collection includes everything from “being named prom king to secrets hidden deep in an attic to surprise visits from past lovers.” Even if you only go just to see Float, directed by Three Dollar Bill’s very own Sam Berliner, it’ll be worth it.


Naz & Maalik

Thursday, October 15 / 7pm
SIFF Cinema Egyptian

This award-winning film captures the story of two closeted Muslims from Brooklyn, and touches on issues of religion, identity, and racism.


Nasty Baby

Friday, October 16 / 7pm
AMC Pacific Place

To be honest, I’d watch Kristen Wiig read out of the phonebook for an hour. She’s one of those gifted actors who not only has impeccable comedic talent, but some great dramatic chops as well. This film, from Chilean director and star Sebastián Silva, has already wowed audiences and snatched awards at Sundance, OutFest, and the Berlin International Film Fest, and will be making its PNW debut. Don’t miss it.


The online festival guide includes some handy lists of showings by category, including: themes, centerpieces showings, and short film programs.

Regardless of whether you follow these recommendations, or create your own list of favorites, the 20th Seattle Lesbian & Gay Film Festival is sure to be a crowd pleaser. Don’t miss it!