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Special Features Index  

Spotlight Lesbian and Bisexual Female Film Directors
  Lesbian and female bisexual Directors have had an important and continuing impact on both Documentary and dramatic Film. Several have helped combat lesbian invisibility and empower women by raising lesbian and feminist issues in their work.  
  Chantal Akerman Chantal Akerman (b. 1950) is an innovative Belgian filmmaker who creates films that are at once experimental and personal and that often feature lesbian content.  
  Dorothy Arzner Dorothy Arzner (1900-1979) was the only woman director in 1930s and 1940s Hollywood. She made films that convey the varieties of women's experiences and desires and the tenacity of women's relationships with other women.  
  Amanda Bearse Amanda Bearse (b. 1958) is one of the first primetime television actors to come out publicly as a gay person. She has developed a second career as a film and television director and has become an outspoken advocate of gay visibility.  
  Lizzie Borden (b. 1958) brings a feminist perspective and a dynamic authenticity to her films about the unexplored politics of women's lives.  
  Lisa Cholodenko Lisa Cholodenko (b. 1964) is an acclaimed lesbian filmmaker who has so far written and directed three feature films, whose "narrative motor," as Dennis Lim noted in the New York Times, is "sexual attraction."  
  Donna Deitch Donna Deitch (b. 1945) is well-known for Desert Hearts, a pioneering classic of lesbian cinema. She is also a successful film and television director who has made several other films that probe gay and lesbian relationships.  
  Still from a film by Lynn Fernie Lynne Fernie (b. 1946) has had a varied career in the arts, but is best known as the co-director of the celebrated 1992 documentary Forbidden Love: The Unashamed Stories of Lesbian Lives.  
  Film Festivals by and for glbtq people have paralleled the growth of the modern gay rights movement since the 1970s. The diverse collection of glbtq film festivals, now recognized as the queer film festival circuit, came into its own in the early 1990s. Many of these feature the work of lesbian and bisexual filmmakers.  
  Jodie Foster Jodie Foster (b. 1962), who is best known as one of the most accomplished film actresses of her generation, is also an acclaimed director and producer. She has been a glbtq icon for decades, though only recently has she acknowledged her lesbianism.  
  Sara Gilbert Sara Gilbert (b. 1975), who became a favorite with lesbian audiences for her portrayal of tomboy Darlene on the long-running television series "Roseanne," came out publicly as a lesbian in 2004. While best known as an actress, Gilbert is also a director, producer, and talk show host.  
  Barbara Hammer Barbara Hammer (b. 1939) is the most prolific lesbian feminist filmmaker in history. Her films have carefully considered political and theoretical underpinnings and are among the most thoughtful and unabashed celebrations of queer life in cinema.  
  New Queer Cinema describes a group of aggressively queer films that first appeared at Sundance Film Festivals in the early 1990s. The term has come to be used indiscriminately to denote independent films with gay and lesbian content. Lesbian, bisexual, and gay male directors have all contributed to New Queer Cinema in both its narrow and broad senses.  
  Ulrike Ottinger Ulrike Ottinger (b. 1942) is an avant-garde German filmmaker who creates both fictional fantasy worlds that shatter traditional gender constructions and documentaries that examine marginalized peoples.  
  Patricia Rozema Patricia Rozema (b. 1958) is a Canadian filmmaker known for imbuing her films with feminist analysis and sensual cinematography.  
  Monika Treut Monika Treut (b. 1954) is a German filmmaker who consistently explores challenging and controversial issues surrounding minority sexual and gender identities.  
  Rose Troche Rose Troche (b. 1964) has helped to make lesbians more visible onscreen, not as women tortured by their sexuality, but as individuals for whom female homosexuality is comfortable and, indeed, normal.  
  Andrea Weiss Andrea Weiss (b. 1956) is an award-winning writer and documentary filmmaker who has produced innovative work that embodies her commitment both to art and to political action.  
  Alice Wu Alice Wu (b. 1970) broke ground with her first feature-length motion picture, Saving Face (2004), a multi-generational portrait of Chinese-American women who transgress traditional sexual taboos.  


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