Oscars make history, rural Pride networks, India and same-sex marriage, Scream VI is super gay and queer Juno winners

5 queer and trans news stories we’re watching the week of March 13

It’s been a big weekend in the LGBTQ2S+ world, with queer stories winning big at the 95th Academy Awards this past Sunday and Scream VI debuting with more queerness than ever on Friday. Xtra’s gathered five of the biggest stories in LGBTQ2S+ news and culture, so you can get the 411 on everything you might’ve missed, from major movies to major movements across Canada and the world:

1. Everything Everywhere All at Once makes history at the Oscars
2. Queer voices in rural areas need to be heard
3. India could be about to legalize same-sex marriage
4. Scream VI is super gay
5. Some of music’s best queer artists will be recognized at tonight’s Juno awards

1. Everything Everywhere All at Once makes history at the Oscars

Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert’s Everything Everywhere All at Once swept the Oscars this past Sunday evening, collecting seven awards out of the eleven it was nominated for. The film in part follows the lesbian relationship between Joy Quan (Stephanie Hsu) and her girlfriend Becky, as well as Joy’s relationship with her mother Evelyn (Michelle Yeoh). The film has been hailed a queer masterpiece by critics, making its win for Best Picture one to remember. 

Yeoh made history when she became the first Asian woman in history—as well as just the second woman of colour ever—to take home the Oscar for Best Actress. She was presented the award by Halle Berry, the first woman of colour ever to be named Best Actress at the Academy Awards in 2002 for her role in Monster’s Ball.

In the acceptance speech after winning Best Director, Daniel Scheinert also briefly called out conservative attacks on drag, to widespread applause. In thanking his own parents, the director said, “Thank you for not squashing my creativity when I was making really disturbing horror films, or really perverted comedy films or dressing in drag as a kid, which is a threat to nobody.” 

2. Queer voices in rural areas need to be heard

The Fierté Canada Pride conference sees representatives from over 75 Pride organizations gather to plan annual events, network and share experiences in a different host city each year. This year, groups gathered in Kelowna, Ontario, to speak on the theme of the 2023 conference, “Amplifying Rural and Remote Voices.” 

Executive director of queer consulting firm Wisdom2Action Fae Johnstone noted that amplifying queer voices in rural areas is especially crucial with the rise of homophobic and transphobic hate crimes across the country. For remote areas without a visible queer community, resources are a vital lifeline for isolated LGBTQ2S+ folks, and so the conference in Kelowna will hopefully serve as a meaningful place to exchange ideas about how Pride organizations can better provide for those communities. 

3. India could be about to legalize same-sex marriage 

India’s Supreme Court said today that the final arguments over recognition of same-sex marriages in India will be heard in a landmark case on April 18. Should the five-judge bench rule in favour, India will become the most populous country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage. 

The case first came to the Supreme Court last year when two queer couples petitioned to change the law, though since then several other petitioners have joined the case. Their petition argues that denying same-sex couples the right to marriage violates various articles of India’s constitution, and demands that India’s Special Marriage Act should accommodate for non-heterosexual couples in its scope.

4. Scream VI is super gay 

Scream VI hit screens last Friday, and it’s looking to be the franchise’s gayest one yet. Queer actress Jasmin Savoy Brown (of Yellowjackets fame) returns to our screens as Mindy-Meeks Martin, the franchise’s first openly queer character who was introduced last year. Though her queerness was pretty obviously hinted at in the last movie, Brown made sure that this one would feature a queer kiss.

Though the movie just hit theatres, queer critics have already applauded the movie’s avoidance of the “pitfall of burying its gay,” as well as the fact that Mindy’s queerness is fully fleshed out—Scream VI finally gives viewers more than just a kiss, and we’ll finally see Mindy with a girlfriend!

5. Some of music’s best queer artists will be recognized at tonight’s Juno Awards

The 2023 Juno Opening Night Awards took place this past Saturday, with queer artists winning big ahead of tonight’s ceremony. 

Sam Smith and Kim Petras’s Unholy took home the much coveted Music Video of the Year award for its cabaret-style video directed by Floria Sigismondi. Sigismondi previously explained that the music video was inspired by queer classics like Cabaret, Moulin Rouge! and Chicago, and features Smith and Petras as cabaret acts supported by a host of other queer and trans performers. 

Tonight’s awards ceremony will be broadcast at 8 p.m, EDT from Edmonton, and will for the second year be hosted by Simu Liu. The “jewel of the Junos,” the Songwriters’ Circle, sees a varied lineup of musicians meet for an informal chat and jam sesh—catch it here.

Eve Cable is a reporter based at The Eastern Door in Kahnawà:ke. Her work has also been featured in Filter Magazine, The Rover, The Hoser, and more.

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