The Kawaller Report: Outfest Fusion Edition

The iconic queer film festival’s outlet for filmmakers of color opened over the final weekend of March 2023, and we hit the red carpet

The queer community loves an acronym, so LAMag wasn’t surprised when we heard that the long-running film festival Outfest was throwing a spinoff festival specifically for artists identifying as QTBIPOC. This stands, of course, for Queer Trans Black Indigenous People of Color, a Venn diagram of abbreviations that, as Outfest Executive Director Damien Navarro confessed, is simply an attempt to mirror the emerging language of the industry.

The point is: There’s a film festival going on for queer artists of color. So we sent local area homosexual and language critic Ben Kawaller to the event’s opening ceremony at the Japanese-American Cultural and Community Center, where he had a number of interesting conversations about identity, how we talk, and the making of (queer) art.

Outfest Fusion runs through April 2. Tickets and more information can be found at