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Xavier Dolan Writes a Love Letter to ‘Love, Simon’: ‘A Door Has Opened and I Can See the Light Pouring In’

Dolan explains why the new LGBTQ romance is such a milestone and wishes he had a film like it when he was a teenager.

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“Love, Simon” has garnered a lot of attention for being the first studio movie to feature a gay protagonist, and the milestone is being celebrated by Xavier Dolan. The writer-director is one of the leading voices in contemporary queer cinema, and he took to Instagram to praise the Nick Robinson-led teen romance after its opening weekend.

“Let’s not discuss the movie itself, but rather focus, on its existence and the fact a major studio has released a film on a teen coming out,” Dolan writes. “A door has opened, which has opened before, but this time, I can see the light pouring in.”

“I’ve watched so many LGBTQ films as a kid, desperately looking for answers, locked up in my room…Most of them were brilliant and invigorating for the young artist I wanted to be, but left the young man I was with little to hope for,” he continues. “Suicides, heartbreaks, bullying, gay-bashing. ‘Love, Simon,’ in all its earnestness, in all its normalcy, shows the struggle of coming out, but with an inspiring conclusion for teenagers who will see ‘Love, Simon’” because they don’t feel “normal”. Perhaps this will teach them that, even if their life isn’t as privileged as Simon’s, they can make a move.”

Dolan goes on to write what a gift the film would’ve been to him if it came out when he was 15 years old. He says the movie will be a “huge step” for those teens struggling with their identity and looking for a film that speaks directly to them.

“Love, Simon” is now playing in theaters nationwide. You can read Dolan’s love letter in the Instagram post below.

After seeing Love, Simon, I felt like coming out to my mom Jennifer Garner (the 13 Going on 30 Jen), and walking in the corridor of my high school with a lost, yet sexual gaze. Congrats to my friend @therealnickrobinson who is so generous and genuine in this that I filed a proper adoption form. I’ve stored my passport in the freezer once or twice Nick but I can be a good parent to you. More seriously, let’s not discuss the movie itself, but rather focus on its existence, and the fact a major studio has released a film on a teen coming out. A door has opened, which has opened before, but this time, I can see the light pouring in. I’ve watched so many LGBTQ films as a kid, desperately looking for answers, locked up in my room, where I’d download movies on LimeWire for lack of a decent video store. Most of them were brilliant and invigorating for the young artist I wanted to be, but left the young man I was with little to hope for. Suicides, heartbreaks, bullying, gay-bashing… Love, Simon, in all its earnestness, in all its normalcy, shows the struggle of coming out, but with an inspiring conclusion for teenagers who will see “Love, Simon” because they don’t feel “normal”. Perhaps this will teach them that, even if their life isn’t as privileged as Simon’s, they can make a move. And perhaps this can teach us, as an industry, that it’s time to stop relinquishing LGBTQ protagonists to insubstantial, typically comical supporting roles, but rather offer them narratives designed around them, and around the opposite of what is commonly referred to as ”normal people”. Normal is a changeful notion. Had a movie like that existed when I was 15, I maybe wouldn’t have lied to my father about that Ashton Kutcher poster I pretended to give my cousin Stefanie in front of him while it was actually mine. Had I seen it then, things would’ve been different. And I’m happy with how things went, and despite the loneliness you feel as a teen coming out, I felt supported. I was lucky. But most kids aren’t. Love Simon is a huge step for them, and for us. Thank you to all the artists and people involved.

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