Apparently, Toronto is the only city in North America man enough to release a film about ordinary gays. The movie Straightman, which Vagrant Films Canada is launching Friday at the Carlton Cinemas, focuses on a working-class Chicago construction worker who realizes he's gay. The film was passed over by California gay distributing companies, which didn't think it fit into their marketing plan. Even the Carlton was initially wary of this first-time film from director Ben Berkowitz.
Exhibitors have it ingrained in their minds that gay audiences only want boys, buff bodies or AIDS films, says Ryan Bruce, president of Vagrant Films Canada. But being part of the gay community, I know there are audiences that don't want those films all the time. It's time more distributors came along and filled the void.