On DVD: New Gay Films Challenge Stereotypes

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Hot Guys With Guns’

Film imagines If Bogie and Bacall were both guys

Someone’s robbing Hollywood’s sex parties!

A plethora of gays are looking to have a good time with tons of hot guys around. But when the party’s over, the revelers find themselves ripped off of their valuables.

No one talks because if they did, careers and marriages would be destroyed. Would you want to tell the police or, worse, your spouse that you had gone to an orgy?

Never fear, though. Ex-boyfriends Danny and Pip have come to save the day.

Pip is a victim of one of these robberies. Danny is a method actor, studying to be a private detective in preparation for a role he hopes to get. Amidst much witty banter reminiscent of romantic comedies and crime thrillers of the ‘30s and ‘40s, “Hot Guys With Guns” is an homage to the black and white forefathers of cinema. thrillers (Hot Guys is sprinkled with reference to it's Black and White cinema forefathers) Danny and Pip are the film’s interracial couple that set out to save the day.

“Hot Guys With Guns” is the work of writer/director/actor Doug Spearman. He recently spoke with SFGN about his life as an openly gay African American artist living and working in Hollywood’s entertainment industry.

“Hot Guys With Guns” is not what we usually see in gay cinema. How’s it been received so far?

It depends on the person. People aged 35-80 love the movie. The older you are, the more movies you've seen and the more you'll love it. Our film was inspired by “The Thin Man” series from the 30s, and film noir. Those films very much featured back and forth dialogue as our film does. We watched every film noir we could. The lines in our movie that come from other movies play well with the audience because they want to see an adult film.

What was the inspiration for your lead characters?

They're based on me and my ex. Pip is passionate and Danny is fearless.

How hard is it to finance a film like this?

We made [the movie] the lint in my pocket. Sometimes I was my own clapper. But we had access to great sets. We raided my closet and my costume designer’s closet. We brought everything we could to the set, including love and time. We wanted to do the best we could with the technology that's available. It was a great set; there was a lot of love.

Is it difficult getting work as a black actor in Hollywood?

We understand that when they say 'urban' they mean ‘black.’ I was up for a shoe product commercial. They said "we want you to black it up a bit." I faxed the president of the shoe company. There are times when I didn’t want to do that.

Looking at your IMDB page, you were on “Noah's Arc,” the gay African American series on Logo. What inspired you to take that role?

It was extraordinary and revolutionary. Viewers had never before seen two black men raising a child together.

Can you talk about the fact that Danny is white and Pip is black? We don't see many interracial relationships in gay films.

We tend to make movies all “black” or all “white.” This doesn’t reflect our world. My partner is white. My job as a storyteller and as an actor is to reflect who we are. I want to get black and white men into the same theater…I want to integrate the audience.

“Hot Guys With Guns” is available on DVD.

‘Straight’ and Butch’

In "Straight and Butch” openly gay filmmaker Butch Cordora, who hosts a long-running gay chat show in suburban Philadelphia, documents his attempt to create a nude calendar. In each of the calendar's twelve photos, Cordora will pose intimately and nakedly with a straight male model.

In this film Cordora questions the importance of labels. We know who's gay and who's not because the models tell us. But once the clothes come off, once they're nude and posing, there's nothing to indicate their stated sexual preferences.

The fascination in watching "Straight and Butch" comes from seeing Cordora pursue his artistic vision as he attempts to recreate iconic images of popular culture. The famous “Abbey Road” album cover of John Lennon and Yoko Ono in the nude is only one example of his use of models to depict iconic imagery. Models “drop their drawers” in all kinds of places — even in the middle of a suburban neighborhood.

Corodora's joy and enthusiasm for the project is infectious.

“Straight and Butch" are now available on DVD.


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