Last week a 20 something gay guy contacted me on Facebook asking if I could introduce him to some friends. He lives in a country that barely tolerates homosexuality, he’s afraid to tell anyone about his sexuality, and he’s very lonely.
Not ‘lonely’ as in ‘wants to get laid,’ but very much alone.
I’ve lost count of how many men messaged me in a similar situation. (And no, he doesn’t want me to marry him so he can become a US citizen.)
The reality outside our borders is that many men have no one who understands them, no companions, no buddies to hang out with, and until the world changes there’s no chance they’ll find Mr. Right and settle down together.
Why are these guys contacting me?
They’ve seen the movies I make. These movies make them feel a little less alone in this world. These movies give them hope by showing that straight people can accept and love gay men. Most importantly these movies portray gay men fitting into our mainstream culture without being closeted or overly fabulous.
I can’t share with you the messages from men looking for someone who will talk with them. I respect these guys’ privacy. But the messages all have a similar theme: They are alone, they are struggling to accept themselves, they don’t know how they are going to live the rest of their lives in hiding.
I’m telling you this so you know how much reach our movies have. It’s true there are no statistics logging how many men in Muslim, Christian or Communist countries watch pirated copies on mirror sites. But Google constantly notifies me of illegal websites streaming movies I made for you and when those movies are translated into foreign languages.
Yes, I make these movies for you. And you make these movies for men living in less accepting countries than our own. In this map, the blue countries legally include gays in mainstream society. The other countries don’t. That’s a lot of people looking to us for hope.
What’s so special about STARS IN HIS EYES and how will it help someone in Algeria cope? First, it’s a fast-paced, entertaining comedy about gay characters who are both gay and regular guys. Second, our hero (Robert Hope) counsels lonely men in the film by offering cognitive behavioral suggestions that encourage self-acceptance and self-protection. Third, the actors in the film are racially diverse. Finally, it is a romance about two men who are very different from each other and also very much alike. Men around the world will see themselves as one or more of the characters.