In the midst of many projects being put on hold or shifted to another release date due to the ongoing strikes, queer entertainment seems to be having a bit of a renaissance at the moment with several LGBTQ+ films and TV seasons recently releasing or being released by year’s end.
Below are a few current and upcoming LGBTQ+ projects that you can watch at home or in your local cinema.
“Heartstopper,” a British queer coming-of-age rom-com series, took the world by storm when it premiered on Netflix in 2022. The story follows teens Charlie and Nick, played by Joe Locke and Kit Connor, respectively, as they discover romance in their unlikely friendship. As the first season’s episodes unfold we meet Charlie and Nick’s friends, including Tao (William Gao), Elle (Yasmin Finney) Iassac (Tobie Donovan), Tara (Corinna Brown), Darcy (Kizzy Edgell) and Imogen (Rhea Norwood), as they work through teenage angst, navigate relationships and stress over school. The show’s highly anticipated second season released on Netflix Aug. 3. In the season, we catch up with Charlie, Nick and the gang as they deal with exams, a school trip to Paris and prom on the horizon, all while dealing with the next stages of life, love and friendship.
“Heartstopper” seasons one and two are streaming now on Netflix.
“Strange Way of Life”
Silva, played by Pedro Pascal, rides a horse across the desert that separates him from Bitter Creek. He comes to visit Sheriff Jake, played by Ethan Hawke. Twenty-five years earlier, both men worked together as hired gunmen but their relationship, as you will learn in this 31-minute Western short film, was more than just a working relationship. Written and directed by openly gay Oscar-winning filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar, “Strange Way of Life” premiered at Cannes Film Festival earlier this year before being sold to Sony Pictures Classic. The studio announced that “Strange Way of Life” will be released in theaters Oct. 6 playing alongside Almodóvar’s only other English-language film, 2020’s short film “The Human Voice” starring Tilda Swinton.
“Strange Way of Life” opens in New York and Los Angeles Oct. 4 before expanding nationwide Oct. 6.
“Red, White & Royal Blue”
“Bottoms” is an R-rated teen sex comedy about a pair of queer high school students looking to lose their virginity before the end of their senior year. PJ and Josie, played by Rachel Sennott and Ayo Edebiri, respectively, devise an outlandish plan to set up a fight club as a guise to hook up with cheerleaders … and surprisingly to them, the plan works. The fight club gains traction and soon the most popular girls in school are beating each other up in the name of self-defense. But PJ and Josie find themselves in over their heads and in need of a way out before their plan is exposed. “Bottoms” is written by Sennott and Emma Seligman with Seligman also directing. The film was released in theaters Aug. 25 and also stars Dagmara Domińczyk, Havana Rose Liu, Kaia Gerber, Marshawn Lynch, Miles Fowler, Nicholas Galitzine, Punkie Johnson and Ruby Cruz.
“Bottoms” is in theaters now.
The powerful story of Bayard Rustin, the openly gay Black civil rights leader who dedicated his life to the quest for racial equality, is finally getting the spotlight with a feature film coming from Netflix. Emmy Award-winner Colman Domingo (“Euphoria,” “Fear The Walking Dead” and this year’s musical “The Color Purple”) will play Rustin, the driving force behind the 1963 March on Washington in a new film from three-time Tony Award-winning director George C. Wolfe (director of “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom”). The performance marks Domingo‘s first leading role in a feature film. “Rustin,” which also features Chris Rock, Glynn Turman, Aml Ameen, CCH Pounder, Da’Vine Joy Randolph, Michael Potts, Bill Irwin, Jeffrey Wright and Audra McDonald, will premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival Sept. 13 before releasing in theaters Nov. 3 and dropping on Netflix Nov. 17.
“Rustin” opens in theaters Nov. 3 and premieres on Netflix Nov. 17.
“Sex Education” is a British dramedy series that began streaming on Netflix in 2019. The series, created by Laurie Nunn, follows Otis Milburn, played by Asa Butterfield, a teenage boy with a sex therapist mother, played by Gillian Anderson. In the show’s first season, Otis teams up with his classmates, including Eric (Ncuti Gatwa) and Maeve (Emma Mackey), to create an underground sex therapy clinic at school. As the show entered its second and third seasons, it focused on the lives of the students, staff and parents of the fictional Moordale Secondary School as they contended with various personal dilemmas, often related to sexual intimacy. The series’ fourth and final season, which premieres on Netflix Sept. 21, will pick up with most of the students at a new school as they prepare for the series’ conclusion. “Schitt’s Creek” star Dan Levy will have a recurring role in the new season.
“Sex Education” seasons 1-3 are streaming now on Netflix. Season four premieres Sept. 21.
“Eileen” is set during a bitter 1964 Massachusetts winter. Young secretary Eileen, played by Thomasin McKenzie, becomes enchanted by Rebecca, the glamorous new counselor — played by Oscar-winner Anne Hathaway — at the prison where she works. Their budding friendship takes a twisted turn when Rebecca reveals a dark secret — throwing Eileen onto a sinister path. “Eileen” is directed by William Oldroyd.
“Eileen” opens in select theaters Dec. 1 before expanding nationwide Dec. 8.