The 41st installment of San Francisco’s infamous international film festival Frameline rolled into the Bay Area on June 15, presenting its opening night film, The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin, to the masses. One of 147 films that were part of this year’s festival, the documentary honors a true literary hero of the San Francisco landscape.
In the words of Frameline’s Curran Nault, “If San Francisco were a symphony, Armistead Maupin would be its consummate maestro.” The author of nine Tales of the City books over four decades — beginning in 1978 — Maupin originally serialized his most famous series of novels in the San Francisco Chronicle. As Nault reflects, though, Tales of the City is more than a series of novels; “they are, in effect, archives of San Francisco history.”
The documentary features on-camera interviews with the author himself, in addition to actors including Sir Ian McKellen, Laura Linney and Olympia Dukakis (the latter two of whom appear in the Tales television miniseries). Interestingly, the film sees Maupin address an old fling with Hollywood star Rock Hudson and take a controversial stance on whether LGBTQ celebrities should be “outed.”
The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin was directed by Jennifer Kroot and edited by Bill Weber, who previously collaborated on To Be Takei, another film to find placement as a centerpiece Frameline selection.
Thursday night opening celebration included a screening of the film and a reception at Terra Gallery in the city’s Rincon Hill neighborhood. Maupin himself mingled with San Francisco’s film elite and an appearance by Looking star Jonathan Groff.
Enjoy 23 pics from the Frameline 2017 opening night celebration:
Photographs by Barak Shrama, Jim Norrena, ACT OUT Photography by Jim Norrena