Directors Charles Busch and Carl Andress were on hand for Outfest’s world premiere of The Sixth Reel, a charming comedy where Busch stars as Jimmy, an impoverished film collector who discovers a legendary lost film. The delightful cast includes Busch collaborators old and new, including Julie Halston, Doug Plaut, Tim Daly, Margaret Cho, Patrick Page, Richard Bekins, and André De Shields.
The film has tons of references to classic films and especially classic film costumes, and Jimmy gets a chance to get in drag for the climactic and satisfying conclusion. Check out the trailer:
On hand for the event were Sterling Jones, Jack Plotnick, David Prevsner, Eve Gordon, Todd Waring, Ruth Williamson, Kevin Spirtas, Maxwell Caulfield, Kerry O’Malley, Bruce Vilanch, Juliet Mills, and Sam Pancake.
Prior to the screening, several attendees paid tribute to The Sixth Reel producer Ash Christian, who died at age 35 one year ago this month. Christian produced Hurricane Bianca among many other films and was remembered by Shangela and others in a tribute video and by Thora Birch and Missi Pyle onstage prior to the screening.
Adding to the wistful overtones, the producers acknowledged the passing of their sound mixer Michael Wolf Snyder, who died earlier this year, also at age 35.
The film was presented as a benefit for SAGE, the largest group advocating for LGBT elders, and Program Director David Vincent noted that there are many wonderful but impoverished LGBT elders who live in an isolated and financially precarious state, just like The Sixth Reel’s Jimmy. Busch had selected SAGE for that reason.
During the Q&A, Busch revealed some surprising film references to a sub-subgenre of films about devil worshiping in Greenwich Village. Cinematographer Jendra Jarnagin said they asked her to watch Rosemary’s Baby and a number of much more obscure films on the subject.
Stream it through August 22 here:
Images: Andrea James / World of Wonder / Xavier Collin / Avalon