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Kim Voynar

By Kim Voynar Voynar@moviecitynews.com

Victory for Constance McMillen

A Mississippi court ruled that the Itawamba County School District violated the First Amendment rights of Constance McMillen when it canceled the school’s prom rather than allow the openly gay student to attend the prom with her girlfriend, wearing a gender-bending tuxedo. What?! Girls in tuxedos? What is the world coming to?
Good for the court for making the right ruling here. And wow, do I ever admire Constance, who has been open about being a lesbian since eighth grade. Ponder that a moment, if you would. I grew up in Oklahoma, not exactly what I would call the most welcoming, safe place to come of age and realize you are gay or lesbian or bisexual. Constance, growing up in Mississippi, had the courage to come out as who she is in eighth grade.
That, my friends, takes courage, and a remarkable sense of knowing who you are and believing in yourself at a very young age. Good for her, and I hope she and her girlfriend have a swell time at the alternative, open prom being planned by parents. Shine on in that tux, girl, and make some great memories.

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“TIFF doesn’t make attendance numbers for its Lightbox screenings publicly available, so it’s difficult to gauge exactly how many filmgoers the Lightbox is attracting (or how much money it’s bringing in). But the King Street West venue hasn’t become a significant draw for film enthusiasts. The Lightbox’s attendance has plunged – 49,000 fewer visitors last year, a drop of 27 per cent, according to figures recently reported in the Toronto Star. Its gallery space – designed to showcase the visions of cinema’s most iconic filmmakers – saw most of its exhibitions staff quietly axed this past fall. And its marketing barely escapes the Lightbox’s walls. Unless you are a TIFF member or one of the city’s most avid filmgoers, you could walk by the Lightbox and remain blissfully unaware of a single thing that goes on inside. TIFF “still has a world-class brand,” said Barry Avrich, a filmmaker and former board member, “but it’s going to take some fresh vision from retail, consumer programming and marketing experts, given how the lines have become intensely blurred when it comes to how people watch film. They will have to experiment with programming to find the right blend of function and relevance.”
~ Globe & Mail Epic On State of Toronto Int’l (paywalled)

“I’m 87 years old… I only eat so I can smoke and stay alive… The only fear I have is how long consciousness is gonna hang on after my body goes. I just hope there’s nothing. Like there was before I was born. I’m not really into religion, they’re all macrocosms of the ego. When man began to think he was a separate person with a separate soul, it created a violent situation.

“The void, the concept of nothingness, is terrifying to most people on the planet. And I get anxiety attacks myself. I know the fear of that void. You have to learn to die before you die. You give up, surrender to the void, to nothingness.

“Anybody else you’ve interviewed bring these things up? Hang on, I gotta take this call… Hey, brother. That’s great, man. Yeah, I’m being interviewed… We’re talking about nothing. I’ve got him well-steeped in nothing right now. He’s stopped asking questions.”
~ Harry Dean Stanton