Before Homosexuals

Directed by: John Scagliotti

Visit Film Site: beforehomosexuals.com .
A prequel to Before Stonewall. This important historical documentary takes advantage of the wealth of gay and lesbian history now available 40 years after the Stonewall Riots.
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With animation, motion graphics, and ancient art works weaved in with interviews with some of the major scholars, archivalists and journalists on same-sex expressions including: James Saslow, Bernadette Brooten, Gert Hekme, Neil McKenna, Tze-Lan Sang, Maria Margaronis, Max Dashu, Theo van der Meer, Thorsten Opper, Sheila Rowbotham, Richard Parkinson, and Gilbert Herdt.
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In 1983 John Scagliotti produced the first gay and lesbian history film for PBS called Before Stonewall. This now classic film went on to win two Emmy Awards and was relicensed two more times by PBS after its first national broadcast in 1986.  While Before Stonewall logically should have started in the ancient period, the filmmakers could only research as far as people were alive (around the 1920’s) due to intense homophobia in the fields of historical scholarship and archival preservation. Even the National Archives did not have a category called homosexuality.

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However, due to immense changes during the 1990’s in the academic and archival fields

resulting from pressure by gay and lesbian activists this material is now available; making scholarship and preservation possible on this mostly hidden subject matter of same-sex expressions before the 20th Century.

Before Homosexuals will be dedicated to historian Louis Crompton, who passed away a few months after his interview for this film.

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John Scagliotti Director/Producer  In 1985 Scagliotti released Before Stonewall. After its national broadcast on PBS in December of 1986, the film went on to win two Emmy Awards as well as other honors including first place at FILMEX in Los Angeles. In 1991 Scagliotti created In the Life, the first television series on glbt life on Public Television. In 1997 Scagliotti began work on the sequel of Before Stonewall. After Stonewall chronicles the history of the lesbian and gay movement from the riots at Stonewall to the end of the 20th Century.

 

Betsy Kalin Producer/Co-Writer  In 2004, her feature length documentary, Hearts Cracked Open, premiered to great acclaim at the San Francisco International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival and has gone on to win several awards.  Her film, Roof, premiered at New York City’s MoMA as part of New Directors/New Films and is a part of the Short Shorts compilation released by Picture This! Entertainment.  In 1997, Betsy formed Itchy Bee Productions and her experimental and documentary shorts have screened at festivals worldwide.  She also wrote and directed the lesbian biography series, LesBios, for web broadcast. She is currently producing and directing the feature-length, East L.A. Interchange and the short documentary, Chained!.

Olivia Tusinki Line Producer/Researcher  After spending two years working in Mali with the Peace Corps, she has lived in London since, completing a Masters in City Design from the London School of Economics.

Dave W. Hall Associate Producer/Web Designer The Operations Manager of the Kopkind/CID yearly seminar and retreat.

JoAnn Wypijewski Senior Researcher/Narration Writer  An independent writer and previous editor of The Nation magazine. She is the president of the board, program director and co-founder, of Kopkind, a summer residency and public education project for political journalists, activists and filmmakers.

Christopher Dawes Assistant  Director/Associate Producer  A multimedia producer at the New York Gay and Lesbian Center where he produced more than 30 mini-documentaries for the online newsmagazine and filmed over 17 live events.  He was also an Assistant Editor at In the Life TV.  His recent short film Long Nights Journey into Day was selected to be shown at CineSlam, Vermont’s Shorts Fest.


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