POSTED ON Sep 14, 2017 BY Jason

2017 TWIST Gala Films Announced!


SIFF Cinema Uptown | Oct 12, 7:15pm

Co-directors Jennifer Kroot and Bill Weber (collaborators on TO BE TAKEI) open our festival with this delightful documentary about Armistead Maupin, one of the world's most beloved storytellers and creator of Tales of the City. Opening Night Gala at KEXP's Gathering Space, with DJ Riz Rollins!


AMC Pacific Place | Oct 22, 7pm

"Transvisionary gender obliviator" Billy Bloom decides to run for homecoming queen, despite hordes of conservative classmates at his high school devoted to football and Jesus.

This book-to-film adaptation of infamous clubkid, James St. James, boasts performances by Bette Midler, Laverne Cox, and Abigail Breslin! Closing Night Gala at Il Fornaio.



In this Glee-ful coming-of-age musical, Ulysses struggles to come to terms with the reality of a dismal home life with his bigoted aunt Rose, after the unexpected death of his father. Party to follow at Capitol Hill's newest hot spot queer/bar!


Aram sees many cultural, religious, and national differences on the one day trip back to Armenia from the US, but harder obstacles lay ahead. Party to follow at Optimism Brewery with food by St. Johns.


Based on the personal relationships and experiences of ACT UP Paris activists in the early 90s, this film shows the fight against fear and indifference from the general public and government. Party to follow at a private event space within Pacific Place.

POSTED ON Jan 24, 2017 BY Danny

Staff Changes!


After 5 years as a staff member at Three Dollar Bill Cinema... We’re excited to announce that Danny Tayara is now the TWIST Festival Director! Danny is a filmmaker themselves, so we know they have the vision necessary to get the job done right!
“I’ve been in a variety of roles in my history at Three Dollar Bill Cinema. I started out with the organization as a participant in the Reel Queer Youth filmmaking program. I was a Juror for the festival, then brought on as Jason’s Programming Assistant. I made my way up to full time programming, as well as Manager of Reel Queer Youth. I’m honored to take on the title of TWIST Festival Director as a Senior Programmer, and very much looking forward to bringing you a great lineup of films in 2017!” - Danny

We’re also happy to say that Translations Festival director, Sam Berliner, has moved up to Seattle as a full time year-round employee at Three Dollar Bill Cinema and, in addition to Volunteer / Administration duties, is now a Senior Programmer!

“I love Three Dollar Bill Cinema and am thrilled to have this opportunity to work on year-round programming to continue to bring stories of empowerment and resonance to our Seattle queer/trans communities.” - Sam

Meet Danny Tayara, TWIST Festival Director

How do you feel about being TWIST Festival Director?

To be honest, I feel a mix of excitement and nervousness! It’s a big task, but I know with our strong programming team it’ll be a piece of cake. I’ve worked with Sam Berliner for a while now and I couldn’t ask for a better arrangement than us both being Senior Programmers. And I’m so happy that Theo Calhoun, a previous Reel Queer Youth participant, has joined us as Programming Assistant to help manage the hundreds of film submissions we'll get this year.

What experience do you have that makes you a good fit for this job?

Being a filmmaker and festival programmer for the past 5 years, involved with Three Dollar Bill Cinema in a very dedicated fashion, I feel very confident! :) A large part of my job includes managing screening committees for both Translations and TWIST, so I’ve seen a lot of movies and I know how to spot the good ones! I also worked closely with past TWIST Festival Directors Kathleen Mullen & Keith Bacon, and I was lucky to learn as much as I did from both of them.

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

Filmmaking, collaborating on projects, animating, crafting/costuming/drawing, watching online tutorials, and volunteering for Camp Ten Trees as a board member and summer camp volunteer. I also founded Seattle Queer Filmmakers, a hub for people looking to make connections and find collaborators.

Which queer folks do you admire (living or passed) or have made a positive influence on your life?

Jason Plourde! Also Brody Willis of Blanket Fort Films, and anyone else who’s ever been a support to me or collaborated with me on a project- including my Reel Queer Youth family!

Anything else?

I love my job! 

P.S. to filmmakers: the call for TWIST submissions is February 1st! Click here for submission instructions. We want to see your films!

POSTED ON Oct 31, 2016 BY David

First Wednesday Queer Film Series

First Wednesday Queer Film Series

We conducted a survey earlier this year and our members said they wanted more opportunities to gather and watch the best of queer cinema. Our solution is our new First Wednesday of the Month Queer Film Series at the Northwest Film Forum! Every first Wednesday of the month, we'll screen a film and host a discussion. For our first film of the series, Jen Kilchenmann, proud board member, selected MULHOLLAND DRIVE. 

Here's what Jen had to say about why she chose this film:

From Sunset Boulevard to Hitchcock, I have always loved films about the movie industry. With Mulholland Drive, David Lynch brings his own spin as well as a darkness you can but admire. While there is a storyline about making a movie, what draws me most to Lynch's take is the female-led storyline that follows Betty (Naomi Watts) as she navigates the dichotomy that is Hollywood. Recently voted Best film since 2000, an accolade in film I can get behind 100%, Mulholland Drive will have you enraptured, entertained, and probably deeply confused. I am really excited to be able to launch Three Dollar Bill Cinema's Queer Screen program with this film for its artistic prowess, its pitch perfect acting, and a script that will keep you wondering if you really did get the whole thing. Oh, and yes, there is a pretty incredible lesbian love scene, if you weren't already sold.

Please join us this Wednesday, November 2nd, 7pm at the Northwest Film Forum. Tickets Required (Buy Here) and are free for members and $5 for not-yet-members. See you at the movies!

POSTED ON Oct 24, 2016 BY Three Dollar Bill Cinema

2016 TWIST: Seattle Queer Film Festival Award Winners Announced!

2016 TWIST: Seattle Queer Film Festival Award Winners Announced!

We're thrilled to announce the jury and audience award-winning films for the 2016 TWIST: Seattle Queer Film Festival!



2016 Narrative Jury: Ana Walker, Adé Connére, and Drew Droege.

2016 Documentary Jury: Werner Borkes, Jill Leininger, and Kara Phoebe.

2016 Short Film Jury: Stephen Anunson, Eliaichi Kimaro, and Emily Zimmerman.

Best Narrative Feature

“For its complex characters, acid-sharp wit, and refreshing take on queer story-telling—it’s also mother-fucking funny—we proudly present the Narrative Jury Award to WOMEN WHO KILL (Ingrid Jungermann, USA, 2016)."

Special Jury Prize

“The Narrative jury is pleased to give a Special Mention For Artistic Achievement to TORREY PINES (Clyde Petersen, USA, 2016), a revolutionary, dialogue-less, beautifully crafted explosion of sound, color, and beauty." 

Best Documentary Feature

"Because the film creates a pluralistic view of trans men's stories while delightfully updating the coming of age road trip and embracing the idea of self-documentation, we would like to give the TWIST documentary award to REAL BOY (Shaleece Haas, USA, 2016). Musical mentorship and intergenerational growth propel the film as thematic elements. REAL BOY’s unique aesthetics, created by centering on Bennett's voice, confronts and explores the intersections of queer identity, addiction and familial reconnection."

Best Short Film

"ALZHEIMER’S: A LOVE STORY (Monica Petruzzelli & Gabe Schimmel, USA, 2016) is a beautiful, tender, intimate portrait of a man loving, and caring for, his longtime partner with Alzheimers for the past 11 years. As the ways they express love and compassion for each other changes, their ability to show up for each other continues to matter.  A truly impressive effort, especially for a student film project, that exemplifies the power of the documentary form."

Most Innovative Short Film

"Through exceptional cinematography and production quality, VÁMONOS (Marvin Lemus, USA, 2015) communicates relevant themes of gender expression in a new and innovative way. The film's compelling narrative structure propels this story about the tension between assigned versus chosen families in the wake of the death of a loved one."



Favorite Narrative Feature: PUSHING DEAD (Tom Brown, USA, 2106)  

Favorite Documentary Feature: CHECK IT (Dana Flor & Toby Oppenheimer, USA, 2016)

Favorite Gay Short Film: THESE C*CKSUCKING TEARS (Dan Taberski, USA, 2015)

Favorite Lesbian Short Film: BOOTWMN (Sam McWilliams & Paige Gratland, Canada/UK/USA, 2015)

Favorite Transgender Short Film: DIANE FROM THE MOON (Hanna Ladoul & Marco La Via, France, 2016)

POSTED ON Oct 21, 2016 BY Three Dollar Bill Cinema

The Lady B Is Twerkshoppin’!

The Lady B Is Twerkshoppin’!

Celebrate the close of TWIST 2016 by working your body out! Blending the basics of movement therapy, a warm-up of Pilates and yoga, and the twerk in its many forms, The Lady B will guide you through a series of twerking tools to increase your visceral vocabulary in a purposefully non-appropriative setting. You will learn to question, with your mind and body, how you can navigate this Africanist movement in a body-affirming way outside of the standard Euro-centric dance studio choreography context. The Lady B will invite you to build your core strength, explore the capacity of your anatomy, and celebrate your booty. Get your tickets in advance right here:

We checked in with The Lady B this week to learn a bit more about Sunday's please check out our interview:

1) What can attendees expect this Sunday at your Twerkshop?

Well, I invite people to leave their expectations at home. So there's that. This space is all about celebration, and connecting with our bodies and what they have to share with us. That's my honest woo-woo answer. Hahaha. We're gonna explore the art of twerk!! Instead of trying to mimic choreography or looking at ourselves in the mirror, we're going to use a mix of Pilates, yoga, the basics of movement therapy, the cultural and historical context of Africanist dance to build the bridge to our own individual embodiment of twerking. 
A lot of people tell me that they can't twerk, they don't have enough booty, that they're bodies aren't made for it. If you can stand, bend your knees, and follow prompts, then I can help you find your twerk (still working on developing a curriculum for folks that can't stand or bend their knees- cause intersectionality). We all have different experiences and bodies unique to those. So what I do is try to build a base language for people to make their own. And just how we weren't born knowing how to tie our shoes or swim, we're not born knowing how to twerk. It's my job to help close that gap. 

2) You've hosted events in the past for Three Dollar Bill Cinema. What about the organization keeps you so actively engaged? 

Because they keep asking me. Bhahah. Honestly, I just love everyone that works there. I believe that they are trying their best to show up for our queer communities, with their programming, community engagement, outreach. They share our stories and not only the same cis-heteronormative, middle-class, white, just-like-mom-and-dad stories. Don't get me wrong. I think those stories are valid. I'm glad they are shared. AND I'm glad that 3DB clearly puts in the effort to reflect the span and depth of our communities' experiences. 
For example, when they brought Miss Major for the Translations opening of MAJOR!!, it changed my life. I'm very out and active as a Black, queer, trans-fem person. It wasn't until I was talking with Miss Major that I realized I had never been in the presence of an out, Black, queer, trans-fem person who managed to get old. Not to mention the fact that she's an icon, living legend, someone I deeply admire. But it had never occurred to me that I might actually survive long enough to get old. I weeped, quietly to myself for most of the film and still do every so often when I reflect on that. 
If there's anything I can do to support 3DB's shenanigans, I'm all here for it!! 

3) In addition to being a performer, you're also an LGBTQ activist. What are some of the issues that are closest to your heart these days?

And I'm Black. Don't forget about that part. That's a very important part. Hahaha. A compassionate sass-mouthing Negro until the very end. 
I'm obviously interested in what is coming from the Black Lives Matter movement, especially because it was started by queer Black people. I'm deeply invested in my work on the board of Ingersoll Gender Center as we're about to celebrate its 40th Anniversary. 
I want to show up for POC (people of color), trans and gender non-conforming people. Oppression is alive and well: trans-misogyny, racism, ableism, classism, homophobia. I firmly believe our revolution must be intersectional. I personally want to use my privilege, access to resources, my power to lift up the most marginalized of us. I'm really excited to see how these priorities show up in Ingersoll"s work, in showing up for our whole community. That's the work I want to dig into.

"May we have the courage to be kind and honest with ourselves and others."

POSTED ON Oct 12, 2016 BY Three Dollar Bill Cinema

The Pearl Peers Deep Into Four Complex Lives

The Pearl Peers Deep Into Four Complex Lives

The Pearl explores the raw emotional and physical experience of being a middle-aged to senior transgender woman against the backdrop of post-industrial logging towns in the Pacific Northwest. The film leans into the struggle of those who were reared and successful as men and have reached middle age or later with a burdensome secret that they can no longer keep.

We travel with four women, all in extremely early stages of coming out, as they attend the Esprit Conference - an annual event in northernmost Washington where transgender women that have lived closeted their whole lives come together in an environment that allows them to express their true identity. From here, we follow these same four women over the course of nearly 3 years as they grapple with varying degrees of transition. 

Director/Cinematographer JESSICA DIMMOCK is the recipient of the 2014 Infinity Award for Photojournalist of The Year from the International Center of Photography and the 2013 World Press Photo Multimedia Contest as the director and cinematographer of the web feature “Too Young To Wed.” In 2010, Dimmock won Kodak’s Best Cinematography Award at the Hamptons International Film Festival for WITHOUT, which she also produced. The lm received an Independent Spirit Award and was nominated for a Gotham Independent Film Award. Along with co-director Christopher LaMarca she was listed as one of the 25 New Faces of Film in 2014 by Filmmaker Magazine. Clients include HBO, Showtime, CNN, The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, and California Sunday Magazine.

Director/Cinematographer CHRISTOPHER LAMARCA will premiere two documentary films in 2016. His second film, BOONE, will have its world premiere in the Visions section at SXSW. He was named one of the 25 New Faces of Independent Film by Filmmaker Magazine in 2014 and is a Sundance Institute Edit and Story Lab fellow. His monograph Forest Defenders: The Confrontational American Landscape was published by pOwerhouse books. His work has been exhibited at the International Center of Photography’s Triennial Exhibition Ecotopia and included in publications such as Aperture and American Photography. Christopher contributes to Rolling Stone magazine, GQ, and Mother Jones, among others. 

POSTED ON Oct 7, 2016 BY Three Dollar Bill Cinema

Get your geek on at TWIST!

Get your geek on at TWIST!

Geek Girl Con is here and has us equally excited about all the super cool stuff to nerd out over next week at TWIST: Seattle Queer Film Festival!

TWIST360º presented by Oculus promises to be a total techgasm for gearheads, VR gamers, and anyone interested in getting a sneak peek into the future of art and filmmaking. The Virtual Reality Headset Gallery will immerse you in worlds both real and imaginary, from pride parades to a magical wonderland. The TWIST360º Bootcamp offers an incredible opportunity to receive immersive training and insights from industry leaders (including Rose Troche, recently named one of the most influential women in VR) with access to a basic gear package to create new 360º films. Finally, the Machine To Be Another live VR art experiment explores body-swapping through modern technology in ways that echo queer culture’s boundary testing and gender defying.

Another techie treat is the shorts program TURN ME ON, a queer-oriented package of films that exposes the gadgets, gizmos and apps that are changing the way we relate to each other, and ourselves.

Disneyphiles are sure to be freaking out over the very special appearance of Bob Gurr, one of Walt Disney’s original and most inspiring Imagineers. In addition to sharing excerpts from a new film about his life and career, Bob will be interviewed by Dave Cobb, Thinkwell Group Principal, Creative Development for a revealing discussion about being “out” in the industry. Dave appears again the very next day with his fascinating presentation, “Cosplay Colonists,” exploring the ways in which fan-created movements and content are wielding ever-greater influence in pop culture. Only $5!

Cosplay takes center stage again in three must-see programs. First up is SECRET LIFE OF THE HUMAN PUPS, a British documentary on the exploding popularity of the frisky and fun world of human pups. Special guests from the Seattle pup scene will appear after the film to speak -- maybe they’ll roll over and fetch, too! On Saturday Oct 22, the award-winning feature film SLASH dives into the erotically and politically charged worlds of slash fiction, comic-cons, and exploring queer feelings as a fanboy/girl. And later that same night, the documentary FURSONAS provides a first-paw perspective on “fursuiting” people and communities as this lively subculture finds itself in the spotlight.

With Halloween just around the corner, chills and thrills never felt so right. The shorts program IN THE DARK delivers all the creepy goods, from sauna zombies to monster spiders. And the jet-black romantic comedy WOMEN WHO KILL gets up close and personal to the unsettling worlds of serial killers and new relationships. Both hilarious and haunting, it hits the nerves we’ve all felt tingle when push comes to shove in love. And the Swedish import GIRLS LOST is a riveting, gender-bending adventure of youthful explorations in magical reality that addresses an age-old admonition: be careful what you wish for!

TWIST: Seattle Queer Film Festival kicks off October 13 with Clyde Petersen’s stop-motion animated opus, TORREY PINES, featuring music performed live by indie darlings Your Heart Breaks with special guests Kimya Dawson, The Beaconettes, and live foley sound effects and soundscape design by Suzie Kozowa.

Don’t miss out on all the fun -- get your tickets and passes now at!

POSTED ON Sep 23, 2016 BY Three Dollar Bill Cinema

TWIST Interview: Tim Kirkman, Writer-Director of LAZY EYE

TWIST Interview: Tim Kirkman, Writer-Director of LAZY EYE

Tim Kirkman received Emmy, GLAAD, Gotham, and Spirit Award nominations for his first feature film, DEAR JESSE, which won the Audience Award at Frameline and was named Best Documentary of the Year by the Boston Society of Film Critics. He also wrote and directed LOGGERHEADS, which debuted at Sundance, and went on to win the Grand Jury Prize at Outfest. He also directed a film adaptation of David Drake's play, THE NIGHT LARRY KRAMER KISSED ME.

Congratulations! What inspired you to make this film? 

I had been writing some larger-scale films for the past three years, both historical, and really longed for the intimacy of a smaller story. I missed directing so much and decided that I wanted to get a movie made within a year. The only reasonable script I had in my desk that could potentially do that was LAZY EYE.  So, with my manager Robin Budd’s encouragement, I dusted it off and set out to produce it. It was really born out of a longing to work. And the other reason was that, in the wake of marriage equality, I saw an opportunity to tell a story we had not seen before in LGBT cinema. 

Imagine I’m a member of the audience. Why should I go see this film? 

If you’re a person who likes films about relationships that are complicated and contradictory and naturalistic, I would say this is a film for you. You should watch it because, I promise, at some point in your life, you are likely to be in the position of one or both of these main characters. I promise.

How do you express personal and universal themes in your film? 

Everything I write is personal and, therefore, I believe, universal. I’m not so special that I am the only person who has ever experienced something that no one else has experienced before. I don’t see much point in making films unless you’re interested in connection, even when the films are deliberately challenging or dare you not to like them or ask you to place yourself in circumstances you might not choose to be in. If there’s anything that guides my work is it’s a desire for empathy. I don’t think we have enough of that in the world these days. Connection — that is something I see at work in my films, at least so far. I look for it in my life, too. But I’m not saying I am successful always, with either, but I think the attempt to connect is heroic, even if it doesn’t end up the way we always would like for it to be.

What type of impact and/or reception would you like this film to have with the public? 

I would love for LAZY EYE to start a conversation about how challenging it can be to look at yourself and accept the decisions you have made in life. That’s a universal luxury we have — self-reflection. And I say “luxury” only in the sense that we live in a country that isn’t war-torn or with a  collapsing infrastructure! The mid-life crisis is real. And it can cause great upheaval in your life, believe me. I know this firsthand! But it’s also a time to let go of so many things and start to accept new ideas and possibilities. I’d love to hear audiences and critics writing about that as opposed to things like the budget of the film or the nudity, for example.

What’s a key question that will help spark conversation around this film? 

“If you could spend a weekend alone with an “ex" from your past that you get to choose, and not know how it was going to end, would you do it?” I think that’s a great place to start a conversation. 

What are you and your team working on now? I have written a movie about Walter Jenkins, Lyndon Johnson’s Chief of Staff, called MR. FIX-IT, that I hope to set up this year, and I’m working on a TV series idea that I’m super excited about. Todd Shotz, my producing partner, and I are also looking for something new for me to direct. I’d love to direct something I did not write for my next project after MR. FIX-IT. 

POSTED ON Sep 22, 2016 BY Three Dollar Bill Cinema

2016 TWIST: Seattle Queer Film Festival Trailer


Director: Michael Moody Culpepper

Music: "Queer Life" courtesy of SISTERS (

POSTED ON Sep 16, 2016 BY Three Dollar Bill Cinema

The Scoop on TWIST360°

The Scoop on TWIST360°

“What would the world be like if one could see through the eyes of another? Would it help us understand each other? And ourselves?” --The Machine To Be Another

Queer culture has always pushed traditional binaries toward a fluidity of gender, sexuality and spirit that can never quite be captured in a single frame. Could immersive 360° media be a platform that dissolves binary paradigms? And will it be queer makers working in the 360° space who realize that potential? These are the questions we’ll be asking as we immerse ourselves in the body­swapping, binary­-smashing, expanded ­media extravaganza of TWIST360°.

TWIST360° runs October 13-­23, concurrent with TWIST: Seattle Queer Film Festival, and will feature a dazzling array of immersive experiences, including:

-Experience virtual drag and pride parades at TWIST­R;

-Virtual Reality (VR) headset gallery;

-Swap bodies in The Machine To Be Another, a VR art experiment from Barcelona;

-Learn from queer cinema and VR pioneer Rose Troche (Go Fish, Six Feet Under, The L Word) about her journey from traditional film into VR.

­And don't forget to check out the project pitches at the TWIST360° Bootcamp, an incubator to seed local queer-­themed immersive media projects!

Full program, schedule, and ticketing information will be announced on September 23 right here:

[Photo credit: Anita Nowacka -]

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