|Winner: MALE ACTOR SHORT & ENSEMBLE NARRATIVE SHORT|
|Cast: ||David Elijah, Jesse James Keitel, Magdalena Borlando, Ashton Muniz, Peter Endrigian|
|Crew: ||Executive Producers: Lauren Flack - Producers: David Elijah - Screenwriters: David Elijah - Cinematographer: Christopher Plunkett - Editor: Christopher Plunkett - Composer: Nathan Prillaman
Zion has recently discovered the world of drag queens and club kids - they get decked out in elaborate looks and go to NYC's most exciting nightlife venues to drink, dance, and celebrate life. This is paradise for these performers and personas, but when the morning comes, Zion lives an entirely different life - working temp office jobs, and living with their very heteronormative boyfriend, Luke. Luke views this avant-garde side of Zion's life as a reckless extracurricular activity. Through the nightlife culture, Zion has started to identify as gender-fluid - or non-binary - not conforming to the 'male' gender performance that they had adhered to before. Luke starts to feel that he doesn't even know who he's sleeping next to at night, and when Zion shows up to his company's gala looking more like a woman than a man, Luke doesn't know how to accept it. This conflict leads Zion to a reckless night out at a club, which leaves both their well-being and their relationship with Luke in a state of deep uncertainty.Like Glass seeks to expand the narratives given to LGBTQ characters and push the boundaries of queer representation in film. We often see romantic films about gay lovers, but rarely see stories on screen that concern the micro-aggressions of toxic masculinity and misogyny in Queer culture or that go beyond the standard of having a character's main source of conflict be their sexual orientation. This film is engaging in nuanced and difficult inter-community conversations that have not had enough representation.Dealing with complicated themes of identity, pride, violence and self-prejudice - ultimately Like Glass poses the question: 'Is a paradise where all people are free to express themselves exactly as they want to be worth it if it has to be hidden under the cover of night? Is it truly paradise if we can't all get there together?'
Andrew K. Meyer is a director, screenwriter and occasional performer currently based in Queens, NY. He made his directorial debut with his short film, "Wreck", a Hypokrite Films production. In July of 2016, Andrew co-founded StoneStreet Cinema and has directed three narrative shorts under the company since: "I Heart NY", "Egg" and "The Nativitree".
I should admit that I was timid to tell this story. I couldnít help but question my place in portraying Zionís experience, a non-binary person facing personal and community conflicts that are completely foreign to my own. For a script of this scale, I wondered at first if they chose the wrong guy. But what engaged me with Davidís vision was that his narrative is told in terms both unique and universal. It was written for everyone, as inclusivity is key to this story. I so greatly wanted to be a part of that.
At first glance, one could assume that Like Glass is a morality tale- a story and a lesson about identity and self-acceptance. And in small and large ways, it is those things. But our thesis ultimately is to exhibit a feeling rather than a message. Through a confounded stream of consciousness, we witness Zionís visualization and pursuit of their Somewhere Perfect.
Sarin dreams of her Somewhere Perfect with a certainty that it exists. But she tells Zion that she could not find it, as no one would go with her. They are left to question: if all of our paradises look different, could we ever share them together?
Like Glass is not the straight-forward story of an individual coming to terms with their own identity- it is the story of an individual bringing those terms to their own reality. The prospect of compelling the world to adapt to our ideals, and the question of how to manage our expectations as we do so, are concepts that we as humans each explore differently. But we explore it nonetheless.