“In Alabama we’ve had a decade of using the arts to educate others about minority communities, and it’s been very successful in a very conservative state,” said Carolyn Sherer, co-director of ALABAMA BOUND, in an interview with Andrea Chase for Killer Movie Reviews. She added, “Telling stories is probably the most powerful way to have people understand and empathize with others that are different.”
Sherer is a fine-art photographer from Birmingham, Alabama, whose work often focuses on marginalized communities. Her LGBTQ-focused exhibitions, such as Living in Limbo: Lesbian Families in the Deep South (2012) and Family Matters: LGBTQ Youth Perspectives (2014), inspired the documentary ALABAMA BOUND.
We were lucky enough to be able to ask her a few questions about her work and experiences.
Where was the first screening with an audience (that you attended) of your first film?
The world premier of Alabama Bound at Frameline in San Francisco.
What was your first experience at a “gay” movie? What did you see, where did you see it and who was with you?
My now wife, Jean and I ordered Lianna from Wolf Video in the 1980s. The videotape arrived in a plain, brown envelope. We watched it in our home in Alabama with friends. We were giddy about seeing something with lesbian characters, and watched it repeatedly before passing the prized possession around our closeted community.
If you couldn’t make movies, what creative outlet would you choose?
I am actually a still photographer working with issues of identity and made this film to make sure our story was told by local insiders–not because I wanted to be a filmmaker. The four-year journey has been an interesting departure for me as a visual artist, and I am excited to see how the experience will influence my future work. I might learn to paint.
With a shout out to James Lipton, what turns you on? Or off?
Binge watching foreign murder mysteries like Dicte with my wife on a cold, rainy day turns me on. Elitism turns me off.
How do you think your film is relevant to the Tampa Bay area?
I understand that Tampa is a vibrant, progressive community even gaining support from the GOP for LGBTQ equality. While that is definitely more progressive than Alabama, our documentary tells the story of our shared history of fighting for equality in the absence of legal protections for our community.
Monday, October 9 @ 7:00 PM
AMC Sundial 20 + IMAX
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