What makes this story compelling : "Divine took everyone that people told him was bad or wrong about himself
and threw it back in their faces. All the screwed up notions our
culture has about body image and beauty - he turned everything upside
down. The fact that he was overweight and a man didn't stop him from
becoming the Most Beautiful Woman int he World. He gives courage to
anyone who’s ever been mocked, ridiculed, and ostracized, and gives us
all hope that anything’s possible."
What he hopes audiences will walk away with: "Divine never considered himself a drag queen. He was an actor who played female parts - and those are always the best roles anyway! He was a fantastic performer, a great actor, and a warm, generous person who couldn't have been more different from the roles he played. I want people get to know the man behind the glamor, a sweet soft spoken guy with so much love in his heart. And he was also kind of nuts too. I especially want kids who didn't grow up with him to get to know this amazing character and I'm hoping this will help secure Divine's legacy for the future."
On films that inspired him: "In a way, the trajectory of Divine's life is a lot like a John Waters
film so we were certainly inspired by his work. The tone we took was
playful, irreverent, colorful and raunchy. The subject matter allowed us
to just have fun and take the audience for a rollicking ride. We were
also inspired by the color palate and garish approach that John's
production designer Vincent Peranio used for our graphic design by Grant
Nellessen. Our score by Michael "The Millionaire" Cudahy was inspired
by some of John's music choices in his films."
What's next: "My next project is "Tab Hunter Confidential", the story of matinée idol Tab Hunter and how he went from being a teenage stable boy to one of the biggest Hollywood stars of the 1950s, all the while keeping a very big secret. We have started production and if fundraising goes well, hope to finish shooting and start editing before the end of the year."
Indiewire invited SXSW Film Festival directors to tell us about their films, including what inspired them, the challenges they faced and what they're doing next. We'll be publishing their responses leading up to the 2013 festival.
Keep checking HERE every day up to the launch of the festival on March 8 for the latest profiles.