16th Annual QFest St. Louis | May 4-10, 2023
Submissions now open! QFest St. Louis proudly accepts digital entries on FilmFreeway, the world's #1 way to enter film festivals and creative contests.
QFest St. Louis uses the art of contemporary gay cinema to spotlight the lives of LGBTQ people and to celebrate queer culture. The event will excite, entertain, and enlighten audiences of all identities.
This year marks the 15th anniversary of QFest. The fest, which largely features films that would not otherwise screen in St. Louis, is presented by Cinema St. Louis (CSL), organizers of the St. Louis International Film Festival (SLIFF). This year’s QFest features 35 films from 13 countries (Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, India, Israel, Japan, Lebanon, Mexico, Spain, U.K., and U.S.), including nine narrative features, six documentary features, 17 narrative shorts, and two documentary shorts.
QFest will be presented in person at the Galleria 6 Cinemas, and a half-dozen programs will be offered virtually. CSL is partnering with Eventive to handle our ticketing and to present the virtual portion of the festival.
Galleria 6 Cinemas, Brentwood and Clayton roads in Richmond Heights. The theater is next to the food court on the lower level. The quickest route is to enter the mall through the doors next to the Cheesecake Factory on ground level. Abundant parking is available both in the garage and on the lot.
Individual tickets are $15 for general admission, $12 for Cinema St. Louis members and students with valid and current photo IDs. To obtain a student discount code, contact Brian Spath (email@example.com) and provide an image of a currently valid student ID.
- Five-Film Passes are available for $65, $50 for CSL members. Click here to purchase.
- All-Access Passes are available for $200, $150 for CSL members. Click here to purchase.
Passes offer great value: A Five-Film Pass represents a savings of $10, and an All-Access Pass provides a $55 discount on the 17 film programs.
- Covid-19 Policy
The safety of our patrons, filmmakers, and volunteers is Cinema St. Louis’ top priority. To ensure everyone is protected, QFest has instituted a number of policies, which will be strictly enforced for the protection of everyone. Guests must follow the instructions of Cinema St. Louis staff members and volunteers. QFest reserves the right to deny admission or dismiss any customer for noncompliance. The following policies will apply:
- Proof of full vaccination (at least two weeks after the final dose) of any FDA-approved vaccine or a negative PCR test within 72 hours of attendance is required.
Methods of confirming proof of full vaccination or negative PCR test are:
- CDC Vaccine Card and valid photo ID.
- A photo of a CDC Vaccine Card and valid photo ID.
- Email results of negative PCR test.
- Virtual Festival Basics
- All four shorts programs and two feature films — “Two Eyes” and “The Unabridged Mrs. Vera’s Daybook” — will also be available to view on demand anytime from April 29-May 5.
- Access to programs is limited to Missouri and Illinois except for "Two Eyes," which is available in the U.S.
- Once a ticket-holder begins watching a program, access to it remains available for 48 hours.
- Full information on access, including system requirements, is found in the Virtual Fest FAQ.
- Help with playing films on a TV (through HDMI, casting/airplay, or apps) is found here.
If you’d like to “Gay It Forward,” helping ensure that CSL can continue to offer free screenings during QFest in the future, you’ll have the option of making a contribution when ordering tickets. Click here for more ways to support QFest and Cinema St. Louis.
- Harvey Milk Film Festival
Friday-Saturday, April 22-23, Webster University's Winifred Moore Auditorium, 470 E. Lockwood Ave., Free
In partnership with Opera Theatre St. Louis (OTSL), the Webster University Film Series, and the St. Louis LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce, QFest co-presents a weekend mini-festival as a complement to OTSL’s opera “Harvey Milk,” which runs in repertory from June 11-25. Harvey Milk’s glorious and complicated life and political career were tragically cut short by a bullet in 1978. Two Oscar-winning films offer different perspectives of Milk’s story, and a panel discussion addresses how storytelling can help us honor history while shaping a new narrative. The events are free, but registration is required. Visit OTSL’s website to register. Film introductions by QFest co-programmer Joshua Ray.
- The Times of Harvey Milk (Friday, April 22, 7:30 PM, Webster U.’s Moore Auditorium, Free): Robert Epstein’s “The Times of Harvey Milk” (1984, 90 min.) — which won the Oscar for Best Documentary Feature — offers a vivid portrait of San Francisco’s historic Castro District in the ’70s and serves as a moving testament to the legacy of a political visionary.
- Milk with panel discussion Sanctification of an Icon Through the Arts: Harvey Milk (Saturday, April 23, 6 PM for panel and 7:30 PM for film, Webster U.’s Moore Auditorium, Free): A pre-film panel discussion will explore whether storytelling about real figures can accurately portray history. QFest co-programmer and film academic Joshua Ray will lead a discussion with OTSL artistic director James Robinson, Broadway and film star Ken Page, and a representative from Left Bank Books. The panel is followed by Gus Van Zant’s star-studded biopic “Milk” (2008, 128 min.), which won Oscars for Best Actor (Sean Penn) and Best Original Screenplay (gay screenwriter Dustin Lance Black).
- PLAYTIME: Poison, A QFest St. Louis Party
Saturday, April 30, 7 PM-2 AM, HandleBar, 4127 Manchester Rd., Free (ages 21 and older only)
DJ Tilda_Sweatin and HandleBar are celebrating QFest St. Louis and the 30th anniversary of New Queer Cinema with a special edition of PLAYTIME, St. Louis’ monthly queer dance party. Tilda_Sweatin and opener DJ BuKu will be spinning tracks that moved all the club kids back in the day and today’s music inspired by them. Come to The Grove decked out in your ’90s queer gear, commune with QFest St. Louis programmers and fans, and maybe even win a prize or two.