*BREAKING NEWS*

After over a month of nominations rolling in from film fans and filmmakers all over the world, the Lesflicks Film Awards (LFAs) 2021 now has its shortlist! Almost 400 nominations across more than 30 award categories have been counted. The films/series/organisations and people with the most nominations were then identified to make up the shortlisted nominees for each category.

The final voting will take place between 21st Jan to 31st Jan 2021!
Click here to access the voting page: www.lesflicks.com/lesflicks-film-awards

What are the Lesflicks Film Awards (LFAs) & what did we learn about our LGBTQ+ audience?

The LFAs aim to identify, highlight and promote the films, creators and distributors who are going above and beyond in helping to #AmplifyLBTQFilm. The LFAs are the first ever awards to focus on awarding LBTQ+ content and the people making and amplifying this content. The Lesflicks team feels it’s high time the filmmakers, films, and collaborators that give much needed representation for the LBTQ+ community are given some spotlight and celebrated for the important work that they do.

The extensive range of award categories that comprise the LFAs were included to ensure as many contributors to LBTQ film could be awarded for their efforts as possible. Lesflicks strongly believes in giving everyone in the community a voice and representation. We aim to educate audience members as well as highlight the work of those people behind-the-scenes who bring the content to our screens.

The response to these inaugural awards has been eye-opening and enlightening. The nomination entries we received have revealed a great deal about our audience’s awareness (or lack thereof) of certain subjects as well as shed light on the gaping holes and challenges that people trying to bring us LBTQ+ content may be facing. Many submissions for the nominations were in categories that they did not qualify for and other categories were overlooked.

The audience seemed unclear about the different stages of film release. As we wanted to celebrate all types of films no matter how they have been released, we had 3 subcategories to the Best Feature 2020 Award at the nomination stage (including films still on the festival circuit, those that had a theatrical release and those that went straight to a streaming platform). However, we received nominations that did not match their category and much fewer nominations from the festival category. This shows us that we still have some way to go to help our audience understand the lifecycle of a potential LBTQ+ film release, and how film festivals (even online) can be a great way to support and view new releases that may not get the bigger platforms or promotion that other films have, but are no less valuable in the stories they tell.

Click here to learn more about film releases and the Lesflicks Video on Demand Platform: www.lesflicks.com/watch
Click to learn more about our upcoming LGBT History Month Film Festival 2021

Films with the most nominations from each subcategory have been combined in the final shortlist so that every type of release is given the chance to be recognised alongside each other; as all are essential in providing our LBTQ+ audience with the representation we richly deserve.

Overall independent cinema/theaters and chains were also underrepresented in the nominations. We had some excellent nominations that have been shortlisted but not a great deal of variety and particularly not for the chains. This could well be a sign that mainstream cinema is not promoting or showcasing LBTQ+ content enough and is therefore not earning our audience’s recognition. Lesflicks has hosted many successful screenings of LBTQ+ films in cinemas around the UK with our Film Club Events and we highly recommend that communities and cinemas around the world consider doing the same. If we don’t ask, we won’t get!

Categories with the least nominations included the audience choices for best media outlets, distributors, and PR and marketing campaigns. This is a shame as it suggests that there is a still a big disconnect between media coverage reaching and impacting the audience, a distinct lack of distributors being good and recognisable amplifiers of LBTQ+ film, and an absence of marketing for this content. Lesflicks aims to support those film/series that have women-loving-women (wlw) storylines and amplify the voices of our community. If you share our passion why not join us? You can pre-register your interest to become an amplifier today: www.lesflicks.com/community/audience

The nominations in the Regional Awards showed that film fans have a deep appreciation of cultural representation onscreen and this was regardless of where a film/series was produced. We saw a great variety of submissions which have succeeded in celebrating diverse stories from around the world, and as a result highlighted how important it is to our community to be able to see such representation.

Lesflicks is honoured to have been able to provide the LFAs as a platform whereby all LBTQ+ content can be celebrated together with fans on a global scale.

YOUR LFAs2021 SHORTLISTED NOMINEES

HEADLINE AWARDS

These are our headline awards, where we aim to raise awareness of films and series. Whilst films with a big distributor and A-list names of institutional backing are well-known, many independent films and series are not as they don’t get the same exposure. We aim to elevate all LBTQ+ content so that they all have a chance to be seen and recognised for their good work.

Best Feature 2020

The audience’s favourite lesbian or bisexual feature film released in cinemas/theaters, on digital platforms or appeared in film festivals in 2020 (released between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020)

  • Ahead of the Curve
  • Ammonite
  • Ellie & Abbie (& Ellie’s Dead Aunt)
  • Forever Not Maybe
  • Happiest Season
  • More Beautiful for Having Been Broken
  • Portrait of a Lady on Fire
  • The Half of It

Best Feature Film Ever

The audience’s favourite lesbian or bisexual feature film ever made.

  • City of Trees
  • Elena Undone
  • I Can’t Think Straight
  • More Beautiful for Having Been Broken
  • Portrait of a Lady on Fire
  • Season of Love

Best Queer Person working behind the camera

The audience’s choice for favourite lesbian, bisexual or queer person working on or in wlw film or TV behind the scenes. Directors, producers, writers – right down to runners. The people that create the content we love!

  • Alexandra Swarens
  • Cory Xenos
  • Nicole Conn
  • Shamim Sarif

Best Short 2020

The audience’s favourite lesbian or bisexual short film released in cinemas/theaters, on digital platforms or appeared in film festivals in 2020 (between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020)

  • Love Knows No Gender
  • Nice Chinese Girls Don’t
  • What Does it Feel Like to Fall in Love?

Best Soundtrack 2020

The audience’s favourite soundtrack from a title released in cinemas/theaters or on digital platforms in 2020 (between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020)

  • Happiest Season
  • The Fortnight
  • Wynonna Earp

Best Series Ever

The audience’s favourite TV show or web series ever made which features a lesbian or bisexual core storyline.

  • LA Webseries
  • The Fortnight
  • The Haunting of Bly Manor
  • The L Word
  • Vida
  • Wynonna Earp

Best Queer Icon in front of the camera

The audience’s choice for their favourite Queer icon in film/tv entertainment on screen.

  • Dominique Provost-Chalkley
  • Katherine Barrell
  • Kristen Stewart
  • Elliot Page

Best TV or Web series 2020

The audience’s favourite series aired on a television or cable channel or on an independent or public digital platform with a lesbian & bisexual storyline (first aired between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020)

  • Dating in place
  • Feel Good
  • The Fortnight
  • The Haunting of Bly Manor
  • Vida
  • Wynonna Earp

The Lesflicks Audience Favourite

The Lesflicks audience’s favourite title available on the LesflicksVOD platform (all films and series are eligible for nomination)

  • Forever Not Maybe
  • More Beautiful for Having Been Broken
  • Rafiki

Best Short Ever

The audience’s favourite short ever made (under 40 minutes) which features a lesbian or bisexual core storyline.

  • Nice Chinese Girls Don’t
  • The Choice
  • The Date

Community Amplification (fandom communities)

The audience choice for Community Amplification, which highlights the amazing power of the audience in the form of fandoms. Communities who take on an identity around their favourite film or series and join a fandom & help it thrive and often survive.

  • Damie
  • Earpers
  • Fortnighters

THEATRICAL AWARDS

Filmmakers create their films with the big screen in mind. Nothing beats the shared experience of watching a film on the big screen and experiencing the reaction of those in the room. Getting lost in the moment. We want to thank those cinemas that programme lesbian & bisexual films.

Best Cinema/Theater

The audience choice for an independent cinema/theater or cinema/theater chain that has programmed lesbian & bisexual films within their programme during 2020.

  • BFI London
  • Landmark Cinemas
  • The Roxie

Best Film Club or Society

The audience choice for a film club or society that has programmed lesbian & bisexual films within their events during 2020.

  • A Fortnighter, Lucas Restoration Retreat Zoomland
  • Forum+ International LGBTQ+ Film Club
  • Lesflicks

FILM FESTIVAL AWARDS

Film Festivals offer valuable exposure for films; they offer communal, shared and unique experiences in which the films, their creatives, the points of views, ideas, and audiences collectively meet together. Often festivals are where audiences first hear about new films. We want to celebrate those who are doing a great job at promoting wlw stories within their festivals.

Best Mainstream non-LGBTQ+ Film Festival

The audience choice for the best mainstream non-LGBTQ+ film festival for its inclusion of lesbian & bisexual stories within the film festival in 2020.

  • North Hollywood CineFest
  • Sundance
  • TIFF. Toronto International Film Festival

Best LGBTQ Film Festival

The audience choice for the best LGBTQ+ film festival for its inclusion of lesbian & bisexual stories within the film festival in 2020.

  • BFI Flare
  • Frameline International Film Festival
  • Outfest

Best Lesbian Film Festival

The audience choice for the best lesbian-specific film festival for putting lesbian & bisexual stories at its centre and for its inclusion and promotion of lesbian & bisexual stories in 2020.

  • Cinema Systers Film Festival
  • LFEST Lesflicks Film Festival
  • Reel Affirmations
  • San Francisco International Queer Women of Color Film Festival

PR, MARKETING & MEDIA AWARDS

You can’t search for a film if you don’t know it exists or what it is called. For this reason, film PR, marketing and media promotion is essential in getting wlw films in front of the intended audience.  We want to celebrate those who are covering films featuring wlw stories.

Best Media Outlet

The audience choice for the best mainstream non-LGBTQ+ and LGBTQ+ media outlets for championing and sharing lesbian & bisexual film. This is for news websites, blogs, journalists who write about and signal boost wlw films and series.

  • Alex Shillington on YouTube
  • Autostraddle
  • Buzzfeed
  • GLAAD

Best PR and Marketing Campaign for 2020

The audience and creator’s choice for best PR campaign around a lesbian or bisexual film release or positive representation on screen in 2020. This can be a PR company or an individual PR person or a TV/film campaign.

  • Happiest Season
  • Proud Parent (Oreo and PFlag)

DISTRIBUTION & STREAMING AWARDS

For you to be able to watch films legally, they need to be available to watch. Distributors and streaming platforms are key in bringing films to an audience. We want to celebrate those that support wlw stories, whether that be through ethical pricing, pro-active promotion, or diversity of content.

Best mainstream non-LGBTQ+ digital platform

The audience choice acknowledging the impact and support of mainstream non-LGBTQ+ platforms in offering positive representation to traditional audiences and making lesbian & bisexual film more accessible.

  • Hulu
  • Netflix
  • YouTube

Distributor of the Year

Best Distributor and Distributor of choice have been removed for 2020 due to a lack of nominations. Given nominations were open to filmmakers as well as audiences this is an interesting development and we will be exploring this further. Distributors are a key part of the film release to audiences and so we will be looking into barriers, challenges and solutions around this area.

Best Film distributed independently 2020

The audience choice for favourite independently distributed (i.e. not distributed by a company) lesbian or bisexual film (between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020).

  • Ahead of the Curve
  • Ife
  • Summer Of Mesa

REGIONAL AWARDS

Although, the progress of wlw content across the world is moving forward at different rates, these wlw films and series are being created. So we look to highlight all the content being made with local stories and within their local areas.

Best Asian title 2020

The audience choice for the best Asian title for its inclusion of Asian lesbian & bisexual stories from countries such as China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, Vietnam. Eligible films are those that were released in cinemas/theaters or on digital between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020.

  • 4 More Shots Please
  • Nice Chinese Girls Don’t
  • The Half Of It

Best Middle Eastern / African title 2020

The audience choice for the best Middle Eastern/African title for its inclusion of Middle Eastern/African lesbian & bisexual stories from countries such as Algeria, Angola, Cameroon, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Kenya, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Nigeria, Syria. Eligible films are those that were released in cinemas/theaters or on digital between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020.

  • Only one nominee was submitted for this category! Tune in on the awards night to find out who the winner is!

Best South American title 2020

The audience choice for the best South American title for its inclusion of South American lesbian & bisexual stories from countries such as Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Columbia, Peru, Trinidad & Tobago, Uruguay, Venezuela. Eligible films are those that were released in cinemas/theaters or on digital between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020.

  • Alice Junior
  • RED

Best British title 2020

The audience choice for the best British film or series for its inclusion of British lesbian & bisexual stories. Eligible films are those that were released in cinemas/theaters or on digital between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020.

  • Ammonite
  • Sex Education
  • Summerland

Best Oceanic title 2020

The audience choice for the best Oceanic title for its inclusion of Oceanic lesbian & bisexual stories from countries such as Australia, Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, New Zealand, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. Eligible films are those that were released in cinemas/theaters or on digital between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020.

  • Dating in Place
  • Ellie & Abbie (& Ellie’s Dead Aunt)
  • Same But Different: A True New Zealand Love Story

Best European title 2020

The audience choice for the best European title for its inclusion of European lesbian & bisexual stories from countries such as France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Poland, Romania, Albania, Austria, Belguim, Cyprus, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, The Netherlands. Eligible films are those that were released in cinemas/theaters or on digital between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020.

  • El contacto cero
  • Kontrola (Control)
  • Portrait of A Lady On Fire

Best North American title 2020

The audience choice for the best North American title for its inclusion of North American lesbian & bisexual stories from countries such as Barbados, Canada, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Greenland, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, United states. Eligible films are those that were released in cinemas/theaters or on digital between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020.

  • Happiest Season
  • The Fortnight
  • Wynonna Earp

THE FUN AWARDS

We’re all about community, and we also know that the audience loves the chemistry in film. So we have a few more light hearted awards.

Best Couple 2020

The audience choice for the best couple in a lesbian film or series. The film or episode should have first aired in cinemas/theaters or on television or digital channel between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020.

  • Dani & Jamie in The Haunting of Bly Manor
  • Luca & Peyton in The Fortnight
  • WayHaught in Wynonna Earp

Best Sex Scene 2020

The audience choice for the best sex scene in a lesbian or bisexual film or series. An art in itself, a good scene will hit the right balance. The film or episode should have first aired in cinemas/theaters or on television or digital channel between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020.

  • Luca & Peyton – The Fortnight
  • McKenzie & Sam – More Beautiful for Having Been Broken
  • WayHaught – Wynonna Earp

Best Kiss 2020

The audience choice for the best kiss in a lesbian or bisexual film or series. Because chemistry matters! The film or episode should have first aired in cinemas/theaters or on television or digital channel between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020.

  • Dani & Jamie in The Haunting of Bly Manor
  • Luca & Peyton in The Fortnight
  • WayHaught in Wynonna Earp

Best Line 2020

The audience choice for the best line in a lesbian or bisexual film or series. Any good film has a memorable line that you say and everyone knows what you’re talking about. The film or episode should have first aired in cinemas/theaters or on television or digital channel between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020.

  • “I don’t play tennis.” – More Beautiful for Having Been Broken
  • “Nicole Haught, will you marry me?” – Wynonna Earp
  • “You were my Peyton and I was your Luca. And no one else can say that.” – The Fortnight

Media partner

Congratulations to all our shortlisted nominees! The winners will be announced on Saturday 6 February 2021 online in a Virtual Awards Ceremony streamed online across YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and on the Lesflicks.com website.

Lesflicks invites LBTQ+ audiences, filmmakers and anyone with a love of lesbian & bisexual film to also join in our virtual awards dinner on Friday 5 February 2021. Register for the event and download your dinner recipe, purchase the ingredients and pick your best party frock. On the evening of 5 February prepare your meal, grab your outfit and at 8pm in your local timezone share your photos, videos and involvement on Twitter, TikTok and Facebook. Use the hashtag #LFAsVirtualAwardsDinner and tag @lesflicks to let us know you’re joining in! We’re hosting a dinner and you’re all invited! Why not gather a group of friends together and host your dinner and drinks over Zoom?

We hope everyone will join us in celebrating all the great LBTQ+ content that has been released in 2020 and in years before it, as well as share appreciation for the filmmakers and organisations that have helped bring this content to viewers around the world. Lesflicks is proud to have given our global community a chance to vote in the LFAs2021 and wishes the best of luck to all the nominees!

Remember to join the #LFAsVirtualAwardsDinner on 5th Feb and tune in to the Awards Ceremony on 6th Feb to celebrate our love of LBTQ film together and see if your favourites have won!