Entertainment Billy Porter hopes LGBTQ docuseries Equal can help keep the public 'activated'

06:15  22 october  2020
06:15  22 october  2020 Source:   ew.com

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"Pose" star Billy Porter is sounding off on political activism in advance of the premiere of the HBO Max series " Equal ," which documents LGBTQ leaders pre-Stonewall. Porter went on to express frustration with current-day political leadership and correlated it to extremist regimes of the past.

Though Billy Porter , especially, is quick to point out that most of the huge changes we’ve seen in If you’re one of those people, this documentary is for you. “Television helps us make sense of who we Please keep in mind that comments are moderated by the guidelines laid out in our comment policy.

The first time Pose Emmy winner Billy Porter felt a connection to LGBTQ history, he was taking part in it.

Billy Porter standing in front of a curtain: Santiago Felipe/Getty Images © Provided by Entertainment Weekly Santiago Felipe/Getty Images

In his late teens, Porter joined fellow cast mates from a Montclair State University production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat for New York City’s Pride event. He heard shouts of “ACT UP! Fight back! Fight AIDS” as he found himself marching alongside the organization, which continues to combat the AIDS pandemic. Porter didn't know what the group was at the time. He just knew he needed to be there. “You were in the middle of it. You had to be,” he tells EW. “There was no other way. Folks were dying.”

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Billy Porter is an asset to Pose because he has made those around him better, pushing every scene he’s in and providing space for less experienced Unveiled during the tribute will be the Truth, Hope and Justice digital memorial, a curated collection of black and white photographs of mothers who have

Baseball is a popular summer sport and there are two major leagues. Basketball is the third most popular sport; and top basketball players can earn millions of dollars . Football, or soccer, is only a minority sport in the USA, though the national team has qualified for World Cups recently.

Today folks are dying in another pandemic, and Porter notes, “You can’t be on the sidelines anymore — nobody can.” That’s why he hopes Equal, a four-part HBO Max docuseries he narrates, can play some part in the current moment. As a member of the Broadway community, it was the nonprofit organization Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS that would teach the young Porter how to be an activist. As he puts it, they "taught me how to show up." Equal, which chronicles the LGBTQ civil rights movement leading up to the Stonewall Riots, can now serve by further “activating” the public ahead of a presidential election.

Heather Matarazzo wearing a suit and tie: HBO Max © Provided by Entertainment Weekly HBO Max

Through a mix of archival footage and scripts based on historical documents, and performed by a cast of predominantly LGBTQ actors, Equal illuminates the activism of prominent figures prior to, during, and after Stonewall. Says documentarian Stephen Kijak (Showtime’s Sid & Judy), who spearheads the series, "we’re slipping in and out of strict documentary and impressionistic creative recreations but we wanted to bring the history to as close to people and bring it to life in a unique way."

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1. What does Madeleine say about having to adopt a professional name? B) It met with some resistance from some people. 2. How did faving a part in a musical help Madeleine? D) It allowed her to re-establish a routine in her life. 3. Madeleine thinks that stars who seem to be behaving badly.

A small sign with the words " Keep Calm and Carry On" written across was featured in one of Eptein's offices. The pair explored a few of the island's underground rooms and the gold-tipped temple where young girls were said to have been abused.

Kijak was surprised by how many people knew Stonewall but not individuals like Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon, who founded the country’s first social and political group for lesbians and, in 2004, were the first same-sex couple to legally wed. (Stranger ThingsShannon Purser and The Princess DiariesHeather Matarazzo portray them in Equal.) "I do have a straight friend who’s been a lifelong ally and 'friend of the gays,'" Kijak says. "She said, 'That’s all new information for me,' which I thought was unbelievable. You didn’t know who the Daughters of Bilitis were? Are you crazy? What kind of f—ing hag are you? We tried as hard as we could to balance out, especially for the in-the-know queer audience, the kind of top-line history that you all know and love with some kind of revelations and unique presentations of that history."

Billy Porter standing in front of a curtain: “You can’t be on the sidelines anymore — nobody can, © Santiago Felipe/Getty Images “You can’t be on the sidelines anymore — nobody can," says the Pose Emmy winner, who narrates the four-part series on LGBTQ historical figures.

The Handmaid’s Tale star Samira Wiley also plays A Raisin in the Sun playwright Lorraine Hansberry; Star Trek: Discovery’s Anthony Rapp stars as activist Harry Hay; and Sense8’s Jamie Clayton is Christine Jorgensen, recognized as the world’s first transgender celebrity, among others.

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Keeping busy. The public school in town served a number of purposes. It approved student clubs that were formed, helped resolve discipline problems, and played a role in setting codes of conduct and dress.

is demanding money or favours from someone by threatening to reveal a secret about them which, if made public , could cause the person embarrassment and harm (шантаж). is murdering a public figure such as a king, a president, etc. (политическое убийство). bribery and corruption.

a close up of Jamie Clayton looking at the camera: HBO Max © Provided by Entertainment Weekly HBO Max

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Kijak says it was important to cap each episode with “a riot or [act of] civil disobedience or something that shows the pushback against an oppressive society.” The lead up to the first NYC Pride Parade, held one year after Stonewall, was "a moment of militancy and organization." Those things are important now, Kijak adds, because it’s “all coming back to haunt us. It’s really weird As we were making [Equal], it seemed history felt more and more prescient with each passing day.”

This series, as well as shows like Porter's Pose, featuring the most trans actors in series regular roles to tell of NYC's ballroom voguing scene, is a form of the actor's activism. "Art is activism," he says. "Artists have always been at the forefront of speaking truth to power when nobody else can, or will. It's historical. We have the power to reach into the hearts and change the molecular structure of human beings from the inside out. I made the choice a long time ago, to make sure that’s what I was choosing. That is why Pose came into my life, that is why Equal came into my life. I have made a conscious choice and an intention to choose service."

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Anthony Rapp sitting at a desk: HBO Max © Provided by Entertainment Weekly HBO Max

In an election year marked by Black Lives Matter demonstrations, attacks against journalists and protesters, and a devastating pandemic that's still left largely unchecked by the federal government, Porter emphasizes the power of voting. Equal — and history, for that matter — acts as a reminder that “the one power we as citizens have [is] to show up and be active and participate,” Porter notes. “That is the issue. If you don’t participate, if you don't honor what democracy is and means, [progress] will go away.”

This past June, marking 2020's LGBTQ Pride Month, Porter spoke up for the Black queer community in light of an attack on trans woman Iyanna Dior in Minneapolis during a Black Lives Matter protest. He has since participated in virtual Pride events, appeared during the virtual Democratic National Convention in support of presidential candidate Joe Biden and vice presidential pick Kamala Harris, and he hosted the ACLU's Bill of Rights Gala.

As we get closer to the November election, Porter turns his attention to "Orangina 45" — his nickname for current President Donald Trump. Everyone in a position of power with the ability to check Trump, from "people in the Senate" all the way back to former Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation James Comey, Porter says, "chose their whiteness" over holding him accountable. "Y’all thought it was cute, playing with our lives like it’s a chess game. These policies and what’s going on has real effects on human beings and y’all don’t give a f---."

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Samira Wiley looking at the camera: HBO Max © Provided by Entertainment Weekly HBO Max

If there's any silver lining, Porter sees how the "white allies" in support of people of color "have finally woken up and seen the truth because we’ve been screaming it for centuries," Porter continues. "Very often our allies are not activated because they don’t believe us. Now, they’re activated. Everybody is activated." The challenge now, he adds, is "that we must always stay activated."

Equal premieres Thursday on HBO Max.

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Nevada becomes first state to constitutionally protect same-sex marriage .
If the federal Supreme Court ever reverses its decision on gay marriage, Nevada will protect marriages in the state. Election 2020: These 6 LGBTQ politicians won big on Election Day 2020. Here's what you should know about them. 'A trailblazing voice': Monica Roberts, influential trans journalist and activist, dies at 58 “I am just so elated that Nevada is the first state to take that stand and my community has taken that stand,” said Lyric Burt, 35, of Reno. “Because we’ve voted red for so long in a lot of presidential elections, it got this reputation for being a really conservative state.

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