Trans in Film & Video 3/29/23

| May 29, 2023
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Trace Lysette

Trace Lysette stars in Monica as a trans woman returning to her estranged mother’s home to care for her while her mother is ill. The film premiered at the Venice Film Festival in 2022 and has recently been opening in select theaters across the U.S. One of those theaters in Dallas, Texas recently screened the film for free. The free screening happened when Sarah Paulson, best know for American Horror Story, bought all the tickets for the day and advertised the free showing. The state of Texas is seeking to ban transition-related care for transgender youths with Senate Bill 14. Showing Monica deep in the heart of Texas is a poke in the eye to the conservative legislators who have ginned up a threat from transgender people just to curry favor and votes from their base. Get more info on the free showing from Chron.

There’s Nothing Left for You is a four-part miniseries written and directed  by Oakland high school students in conjunction with Youth Beat, a local after-school-program that teaches students how to create digital media. The third episode of the series is titled StarCrossed and tells the story of Rudy and Eden, friends in their junior year of high school. Rudy is open about his identity while Eden, who was raised Christian and conservative, has not yet come to terms with the romantic feelings she has for Rudy. Rudy is a trans masculine, Jewish teenager. The role is portrayed by the writer Madds Dittmer who used their own experiences to create the role. Learn more from The Jewish News.

Jinkx Monsoon

Jinkx Monsoon certainly doesn’t labor under a jinx. The two-time RuPaul’s Drag Race winner has been on Broadway, and that’s in a show, not just wandering around on the street, will be in the next season of Doctor Who as a villain, and currently has a one hour comedy special on Prime Video. The special is called Red Head Redemption and in it Ms. Monsoon bares all. Character-wise that is. Learn more about “Seattle’s premier Jewish narcoleptic drag queen” from them.

A 24-minute documentary, House of Tulip, focuses on a nonprofit that provides housing and refuge for transgender and gender non-conforming (TGNC) people. Mariah Moore and Milan Sherry, two Black trans activists, were driven to do something to help prevent violence against TGNC people and they responded by putting together House of Tulip. The documentary, directed by Cydney Tucker, shows the activists in day -to-day situations, from keeping the doors open to organizing the Trans March of Resilience. For more on House of Tulip, the nonprofit and the documentary, visit Prism.

In 2021 Evan Bialosuknia became Florida’s first ever transgender homecoming queen. After that win Evan appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show and was included as a NextGen leader in TIME. Now we learn that she is in college experiencing her ongoing transition. Her story attracted the attention of Ariel Mahler (transfemme) and Radha Mehta, soon to graduate from the American Film Institute as directing fellows and the result is a documentary short titled Evan Ever After. Learn more from Observer.

Venus Pellagatti Xtravaganza

Venus Pellagatti Xtravaganza was a member of The House of Xtravaganza in 1990 and appeared in the film Paris is Burning. Venus was only in her early twenties when she was murdered. Now, some 30 years later she is looked on as a legend and an inspiration to many in the trans community. The house where she was interviewed for Paris is Burning, her childhood home, has been officially recognized as a historic landmark by Jersey City, NJ. There is also a documentary film in the works but plans for it are hush, hush. Learn more about Venus from

While trans representation has a long way to go it’s doing much better than it was in the old days. It wasn’t that long ago that the only part available for a trans woman was playing a sex worker. In the past few years things have improved. There are several examples of trans actors being cast to play roles that don’t revolve around the character’s gender. Patti Harrison in She Hulk and Zion Moreno in Gossip Girl come to mind. Pink News has made a list of 8 young rising stars.

Frankie Gonzales-Wolfe

Reel South is a Public Broadcasting Service documentary series that broadcasts feature length and short documentaries to tell the stories of people who live in the South. Recently the show concluded its eighth season with a full-length film titled A Run for More. It follows a trans woman named Frankie Gonzales-Wolfe beginning in 2016 when filmmaker Ray Whitehouse met her in San Antonio. She was active organizing support for Hillary Rodham Clinton’s presidential campaign. Whitehouse saw the work it took to run a local presidential campaign and did what filmmakers do, he began filming her at work. Right after Clinton lost the election Whitehouse shot scenes at Gonzales-Wolfe’s wedding. Three years later she called Whitehouse to let him know she had become the first trans woman to run for San Antonio’s city council. Learn more from the Los Angeles Blade.

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Category: Transgender Fun & Entertainment


About the Author ()

Angela Gardner is a founding member of The Renaissance Transgender Assoc., Inc., former editor of its newsletter and magazine, Transgender Community News. She was the Diva of Dish for TGF in the late 1990s and Editor of LadyLike magazine until its untimely demise. She has appeared in film and television shows portraying TG characters, as well as representing Renaissance on numerous talk shows.

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