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Back to Section One | Back to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, May 25, 2012 - Volume 40 Issue 21
Maine marriage campaign doc debuts at NWFF
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Maine marriage campaign doc debuts at NWFF

by James Whitely - SGN Staff Writer

Question One, a documentary on Maine's same-sex marriage referendum battle, will open in Seattle on Friday, May 25, for a one-week 'engagement' at the Northwest Film Forum. The film details the tactics and strategies used by both the advocates and opponents of same-sex marriage in Maine, offering insight into what lies ahead here in Washington.

'The film takes viewers on this incredible behind-the-scenes journey into the closed-door strategy sessions where tactics were discussed,' said Joe Fox, one of the film's two award-winning directors. 'Our movie really gives viewers a human look at the leaders and the volunteers alike, from both sides - ordinary individuals who were caught up in the fight of their lives.'

According to the filmmakers, this is the first time a film has chronicled both sides of a same-sex marriage campaign. Fox and co-director James Nubile spent the 2009 referendum campaign embedded in 'war rooms' and strategy sessions of each side, capturing the conflicts, fears, insights, and private thoughts of key leaders as they crafted their messages and strategies.

'Marriage for Gays and Lesbians is an issue that's personal, no matter what side of the divide you're on & I wanted to tell a story that explored the humanity of what this issue is about,' said Fox. 'I wanted to hold the mirror up and honestly reflect what I saw.'

Fox and Nubile also shadowed volunteers as they knocked on doors and made phone calls. Through revealing interviews, volunteers on both sides bared all to the pair as they fought to the finish for an issue anchored in their passion and purpose.

'I am Gay,' said Fox. 'And I am for Gays and Lesbians being given the legal right to marry, but I am also a journalist and filmmaker, and I'm a professional. The one thing that was front and center at all times was telling the story of people with honesty, respect, and dignity, no matter if I agreed with them or not.'

Question One is the newest film by Fox and Nubile's Fly on the Wall Productions. Their last documentary, Passing Poston, about a Japanese internment camp during World War II, aired nationwide in 2010 on PBS. Question One runs from May 25 to 31 at the Northwest Film Forum.

'This is a fight that's coming to us. We didn't ask for it. They play to win and so should we,' said Fox. 'What I'm hoping is that this movie gets our community riled up and mad. Mad enough to say 'I'm going to do everything within my power from now until the election to work harder, to volunteer more time, and to do everything that I [can] do to make sure that we end up being able to [marry] the one we love.'

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