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‘Moonlight’ heads Dorian Awards nominations

‘Moonlight’ earns seven nominations



(Screenshot via YouTube)

(Screenshot via YouTube)

The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association (GALECA) have announced the nominees for the 2017 Dorian Awards with “Moonlight” leading the pack at seven nominations.

The Dorian Awards celebrates the best in mainstream and LGBT movies and television chosen by a select group of film and T.V. critics and entertainment journalists

GALECA will also honor Baltimore native John Waters with its career achievement honor, Timeless Star.

Winners will be announced on Jan. 26. GALECA will celebrate the winners with its annual Winners Toast on Feb. 18 in Los Angeles.

The complete list of nominees is below.

Film of the Year
“Jackie”- (Fox Searchlight)
“La La Land” – (Summit/Lionsgate)
“Manchester by the Sea”-  (Roadside/Amazon Studios)
“Moonlight”-  (A24)
“20th Century Women”-  (A24)

Director of the Year
(Film or Television)
Barry Jenkins- “Moonlight” (A24)
Pablo Larraín- “Jackie” (Fox Searchlight)
Kenneth Lonergan- “Manchester By the Sea” (Roadside/Amazon Studios)
Park Chan-wook- “The Handmaiden” (Amazon Studios)
Damien Chazelle- “La La Land” (Summit/Lionsgate)

Film Performance of the Year — Actress
Annette Bening- “20th Century Women” (A24)
Viola Davis- “Fences” (Paramount)
Isabelle Huppert- “Elle” (Sony Classics)
Emma Stone- “La La Land” (Summit/Lionsgate)
Natalie Portman- “Jackie” (Fox Searchlight)

Film Performance of the Year — Actor
Casey Affleck- “Manchester by the Sea” (Roadside/Amazon Studios)
Mahershala Ali- “Moonlight” (A24)
Ryan Gosling- “La La Land” (Summit/Lionsgate)
Trevante Rhodes- “Moonlight” (A24)
Denzel Washington- “Fences” (Paramount)

LGBTQ Film of the Year
“Being 17”- (Strand)
“Closet Monster”-  (Strand)
“Moonlight”-  (A24)
“Other People”-  (Vertical)
“The Handmaiden”-  (Amazon Studios)

Foreign Language Film of the Year
“Elle”-  (Sony Classics)
“Neruda”-  (The Orchard)
“The Handmaiden”-  (Amazon Studios)
“Things to Come”-  (Sundance Selects)
“Toni Erdmann”-  (Sony Pictures Classics)

Screenplay of the Year
Barry Jenkins- “Moonlight” (A24)
Efthymis Filippou, Yorgos Lanthimos- “The Lobster” (A24)
Damien Chazelle- “La La Land” (Summit/Lionsgate)
Kenneth Lonergan- “Manchester by the Sea” (Roadside/Amazon Studios)
Mike Mills- “20th Century Women” (A24)

Documentary of the Year
(theatrical release, T.V. airing or DVD release)
“I Am Not Your Negro”- (Magnolia)
“O.J. Made in America”- (ESPN Films)
“13th”- (Netflix)
“Tickled”- (Magnolia)
“Weiner”- (Netflix)

Visually Striking Film of the Year
“Arrival”- (Paramount)
“Jackie”- (Fox Searchlight)
“La La Land”- (Lionsgate)
“Moonlight”- (A24)
“The Handmaiden”- (Amazon Studios)

Unsung Film of the Year
“American Honey”- (A24)
“Captain Fantastic”- (Bleecker Street)
“Christine”- (The Orchard)
“Other People”- (Vertical)
“Sing Street”- (The Weinstein Company)

Campy Film of the Year
“Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie”- (Fox Searchlight)
“King Cobra”- (IFC Midnight)
“Nocturnal Animals”- (Focus Features)
“The Dressmaker”- (Broadgreen/Amazon Studios)
“The Neon Demon”- (Broadgreen/Amazon Studios)

T.V. Drama of the Year
“Black Mirror”- (Netflix)
“Game of Thrones”- (HBO)
“Stranger Things”- (Netflix)
“The Crown”- (Netflix)
“The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story”- (FX)
“Westworld”- (HBO)

T.V. Comedy of the Year
“Atlanta”- (FX)
“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”- (CW)
“Insecure”- (HBO)
“Transparent”- (Amazon)
“Veep”- (FX)

T.V. Performance of the Year — Actor
Riz Ahmed- “The Night Of” (HBO)
Sterling K. Brown- “The People v. O.J. Simpson” (FX)
Donald Glover- “Atlanta” (FX)
Jeffrey Tambor- “Transparent” (Amazon)
Courtney B. Vance- “The People v. O.J. Simpson” (FX)

T.V. Performance of the Year — Actress
Claire Foy- “The Crown” (Netflix)
Julia Louis-Dreyfus- “Veep” (HBO)
Thandie Newton- “Westworld” (HBO)
Sarah Paulson- “American Crime Story: The People V. O.J. Simpson” (FX)
Winona Ryder- “Stranger Things” (Netflix)

T.V. Current Affairs Show of the Year
“Anderson Cooper 360”- (CNN)
“Full Frontal with Samantha Bee”- (TBS)
“Last Week Tonight with John Oliver”- (HBO)
“The Rachel Maddow Show”- (MSNBC)
“Real Time with Bill Maher”- (HBO)

T.V. Musical Performance of the Year
Beyonce- “Lemonade,” “MTV Video Music Awards” (MTV)
Kelly Clarkson- “Piece by Piece,” “American Idol” (Fox)
Lady Gaga – “Til It Happens to You,” “The 88th Academy Awards” (ABC)
Jennifer Hudson- “I Know Where I’ve Been,” “Hairspray Live!” (NBC)
Kate McKinnon-“Hallelujah,” “Saturday Night Live” (NBC)

LGBTQ T.V. Show of the Year
“Looking: The Movie”- (HBO)
“Orange Is the New Black”- (Netflix)
“RuPaul’s Drag Race All-Stars”- (Logo)
“The Real O’Neals”- (ABC)
“Transparent”- (Amazon)

Unsung T.V. Show of the Year
“Fleabag” (Amazon)
“Lady Dynamite” (Netflix)
“London Spy” (BBC America)
“Please Like Me” (Pivot)
“The Real O’Neals” (ABC)

Campy T.V. Show of the Year
“Finding Prince Charming”- (Logo)
“Fuller House”- (Netflix)
“Hairspray Live!”- (NBC)
“RuPaul’s Drag Race All-Stars”- (Logo)
“Scream Queens”- (Fox)
“The Rocky Horror Picture Show” – (Fox)

We’re Wilde About You! Rising Star of the Year
Millie Bobby Brown
Lucas Hedges
Connor Jessup
Ruth Negga
Trevante Rhodes

Wilde Wit of the Year
(honoring a performer, writer or commentator whose observations both challenge and amuse)
Samantha Bee
Carrie Fisher
Bill Maher
Kate McKinnon
John Oliver

Wilde Artist of the Year
(honoring a truly groundbreaking force in the fields of film, theater and/or television)
Viola Davis
Barry Jenkins
Kate McKinnon
Lin-Manuel Miranda




Trans women banned from track and field, intersex athletes restricted

World Athletics Council policy to go into effect March 31



CeCé Telfer (Photo courtesy of Instagram)

The organization that makes the rules for track and field meets around the world declared Thursday it will bar transgender women who have experienced male puberty from competing, a move that was anticipated following a similar trans ban issued last year by the governing body for world swimming.

As the Associated Press noted, at this moment there are zero trans women competing at the elite level of track and field. But the edict, which the World Athletics Council announced will take effect on the Transgender Day of Visibility, March 31, is crushing news for one hopeful. 
In May 2019, CeCé Telfer won the 400m hurdles at the Division II championships and became the first out trans woman to win an NCAA title. She’s been training ever since for her shot at the Olympics, despite being ruled ineligible for Beijing at the trials in 2021. The Jamaican-American had set a goal of qualifying for Paris in 2024. But the World Athletics ban ends that dream.

Telfer tweeted Thursday, “It feels as though the world stopped moving.”

Another ruling by the group will likely mean no shot at the Olympics for another Black woman athlete, two-time gold medalist Caster Semenya. The South African track icon is not trans, but because of her higher than typical testosterone levels, she has been barred from competing in her signature event, the 800m. World Athletics took that from her around the same time Telfer made history, in May 2019. 

The group issued an eligibility ruling that prohibits female athletes like Semenya who have Differences in Sexual Development from competing in women’s events, from the 400m to one mile (1600m), unless they reduce their testosterone levels. So, Semenya chose to run in longer events than she did previously. She finished 13th in her qualifying heat at 5,000 meters at world championships last year as she worked to adapt to longer distances, in preparation for Paris. 

“I’m in the adaptation phase, and my body is starting to fit with it. I’m just enjoying myself at the moment, and things will fall into place at the right time,” the South African runner told the AP.

That time may now never come. On Thursday, World Athletics announced athletes who have DSD will have to undergo hormone-suppressing treatment and maintain a testosterone level of below 2.5nmol/L for 24 months, in order to be eligible to compete in any event in the female category.

Semenya vowed following the 2019 ruling that she would never again take any testosterone suppressing medication, terming the rules discriminatory and unfair.

This new rule could impact not only Semenya but also as many as a dozen other elite runners, World Athletics President Sebastian Coe said. Among them, Olympic 200-meter silver medalist Christine Mboma of Namibia, who won a silver medal in Tokyo two years ago but didn’t compete last year because of an injury. Mboma has not publicly stated whether she would be willing to undergo hormone therapy.

Like Semenya, Olympic 800-meter silver medalist Francine Niyonsaba of Burundi has said she will not undergo hormone suppression. 

Even though Niyonsaba, Mboma and Semenya are not trans like Telfer and former Connecticut high school track athletes Andraya Yearwood and Terry Miller — who have been targeted in federal court by opponents of inclusion — there is one thing all these women have in common: They are all women of color, and all targeted for being too fast because of their natural gifts.

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Chicago Blackhawks: No Pride jerseys over Russia concerns

Several of the team’s players are Russian



Chicago Blackhawks players wearing 'Pride Night' jerseys in April of 2022 (Photo Credit: Chicago Blackhawks/Facebook)

The National Hockey League’s Chicago Blackhawks franchise have opted to not wear the team’s Pride-themed warmup jerseys before Sunday’s Pride Night game against the Vancouver Canucks based on security concerns over the recently expanded Russian law prohibiting mention of LGBTQ rights in Russia the Associated Press reported.

According to the AP, the decision was made by the NHL organization following discussions with security officials within and outside the franchise, according to a person familiar with the situation who spoke to the AP on Wednesday on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the move.

Blackhawks defenseman Nikita Zaitsev is a Moscow native, and there are other players with family in Russia or other connections to the country the AP noted.

The team has participated in the LGBTQ themed part of the ‘Hockey is for everyone‘ campaign and has in previous years set aside recognition for the LGBTQ community in Pride night celebrations.

While the team will forgo the jerseys, the AP noted that DJs from the LGBTQ community will play before the game and during an intermission, and the Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus also is slated to perform. There also are plans to highlight a couple of area businesses with ties to the LGBTQ community.

The decision by the team has sparked outage including Outsports editor Cyd Zeigler, who noted on Twitter that the NHL has an inclusion problem as the Chicago team joins the New York Rangers, who opted not to wear Pride jerseys or use Pride stick tape as part of their Pride night this past January despite previously advertising that plan. The Rangers’ Pride Night was held 10 days after Ivan Provorov, the alternate captain for the National Hockey League’s Philadelphia Flyers, opted out of participating in the team’s Pride Night charity event before the game Tuesday, claiming a religious exemption based on his Russian Orthodox faith.

San Jose Sharks goalie James Reimer didn’t take part in the Sharks Pride Night wearing Pride-themed jerseys in support of the LGBTQ community, telling multiple media outlets that support of the LGBTQ community runs counter to his religious beliefs.

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Reading ‘Blue Hunger’ is like watching a Stanley Kubrick film

Lush, dreamlike, and you won’t be able to stop thinking about it



(Book cover image courtesy of Bloomsbury)

‘Blue Hunger’ 
By Viola Di Grado, translated by Jamie Richards
c.2023, Bloomsbury
$27/ 216 pages

You can’t stop thinking about it.

It’s been rolling around in your mind since it happened and you can’t stop. You replay it over and over, how it started, how it progressed, why it ended. You wonder if it’ll happen again and in the new novel “Blue Hunger” by Viola Di Grado, you wonder if you truly want it to.

Shanghai was not her first choice for a place to live. Sometimes, she wasn’t really even sure why she came there, except that it was Ruben’s dream.

For months and months, he spoke of Shanghai, showed her maps, talked of a life as a chef living in a high-rise apartment, and he taught her a little bit of the language. She never fully understood why Ruben loved China and she never thought to ask before her other half, her twin brother, her only sibling died.

She was brushing her teeth when it happened. Now, weeks later, she was in his favorite city, a teacher of Italian languages in a Chinese culture, alone, friendless. Then she met Xu.

It happened at the nightclub called Poxx and she later wondered, with a thrill, if Xu had been stalking her. Xu claimed that she was a student in the Italian class, but though she was usually good with faces, she didn’t remember the slender, “glorious” woman with milk-white skin and luminous eyes.

She did remember the first place she and Xu had sex.

It was a hotel, but Xu liked it outside, too; in public, on sidewalks, in abandoned buildings, and in crowded nightclubs. They took yellow pills together, slept together in Xu’s squalid apartment; she told Xu she loved her but never got a reply except that Xu starting biting.

Xu had used her teeth all along but she started biting harder.

Soon, she was bleeding, bruising from Xu’s bites, and seeing people in the shadows, and she began to understand that Ruben wouldn’t have liked Xu at all.

You know what you want. You’re someone with determination. And you may want this book, but there are a few things you’ll need to know first.

Reading “Blue Hunger” is like watching a Stanley Kubrick movie. It’s surreal, kind of gauzy, and loaded with meanings that are somewhat fuzzy until you’ve read a paragraph several times – and even then, you’re not quite sure about it. Author Viola Di Grado writes of sharp, unfinished mourning with a grief-distracting obsession layered thickly on top, of control and submission, and while the chapters are each brief, they feel too long but not long enough. There are so many questions left dangling within the plot of this story, so many small bits unsaid, but also too much information of the mundane sort. You’ll feel somewhat voyeuristic with this book in your hands, until you notice that the sex scenes here are humidly uber-fiery but not very detailed.

Overall, then, “Blue Hunger” is different but compelling, short enough to read twice, quickly. It’s lush, dreamlike, and once started, you won’t be able to stop thinking about it.

The Blade may receive commissions from qualifying purchases made via this post.

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