GARDENIA - Before the last curtain falls

7_DSC_0556 copy.jpg © Luk Monsaert


'Before the Last Curtain Falls' tells the story of great love, bitter disappointments and self-doubts - but most of all of courage. The courage to take risks, try something new and be yourself - no matter what age. The film dives deeply into the exceptional and heart-warming stories of a group of transsexuals and drag queens in their sixties and seventies. The cast has been through it all. They╩╝ve gone from rock bottom, to clawing themselves to the top only to fall again. They have worked as performers and prostitutes, been shunned and embraced, undergone sex changes and experienced every shade of love, loss, humiliation and joy imaginable in their long and complicated lives. But they have summoned up their bravery to take the stage one last time. For two years they have been touring in five continents, basking in the success of a spectacular show called "Gardenia", directed by Alain Platel and Frank Van Laecke.

The renowned director Alain Platel is widely known as a revolutionary, visionary and innovator of international dance theatre, transgressing the borders between dance, theatre, music and visual arts. Stage "wizard" Frank Van Laecke has gained a reputation in directing operas and musicals, both for theatre and TV. Now, as the show comes to a close, the glamorous aging performers must leave the limelight and go home to the quiet lives they left behind.


Writer & director: Thomas Wallner
Co-writer & associate director: Eva Küpper
Cinematography: Axel Schneppat
Sound: Henk Rabau
Producer: Kerstin Meyer-Beetz
Executive Producer: Christian Beetz
Line producers: Kathrin Isberner, Xavier Rombaut
Production manager: Nick Pastucha
Co-producers: Bart Van Langendonck - SAVAGE FILM (BE), ZDF, Canvas
With the support of: Film- und Medienstiftung NRW, Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg, German Federal Filmboard FFA, German Federal Film Fund DFFF, MEDIA Programme of the European Union and Flanders Audiovisual Fund (VAF)
In association with: Telenet, arte
World sales: CAT & Docs


Premiere on April 28 at Hot Docs Film Festival, Canada

Festivals & Awards

Hot Docs (Canada, 2014) - Jury award
Docville (Belgium, 2014)
DOK.fest München (Germany, 2014)
Göteborg Film Festival (Sweden, 2015)
Reelout Queer Film + Video Festival 7 (USA, 2015)
F.A.M.E. (France, 2015)
Zurich Moves! / Zurich Tanzt (Swiss, 2015)
One World Film Festival March 2015 (Czech, 2015)
Atlanta Film Festival (USA, 2015) - Best Pink Peach Feature Grand Jury Prize
Vues d'en Face (France, 2015) - Audience Prize
Festival International du Film sur l'Art/Internat.(France, 2015) - Grand Prize
Esperanzah! Festival (Belgium, 2015)
Krakow Film Festival (Poland, 2015)
Vlaams Film festival Breda  (Beglium, 2015)
Torino Gay & Lesbian Film Festival (Italy, 2015) - Best Feature Film
EDOC - Encuentros del Otro Cine Film Festival in Ecuador (Ecuador, 2015)
Flemish Film Festival of Utrecht (The Netherlands, 2015)
Transcreen Filmfestival (The Netherlands, 2015)
Open City Documentary Festival (UK, 2015)
SieFilm Center June 2015 (USA, 2015)
Film festival Oostende September (Belgium, 2015) - Ensor Best Documentary
Bergen Internasjonale Filmfestival (Norway, 2015)
FIWOM (South-Korea, 2015)
ZeFestival (France, 2015)
Northwest Film Forum (USA, 2015)
Luststreifen Queer Film Festival (Swiss, 2015)
Queer Popcorn Festival (Italy, 2015)
Inconvenient Films - Human Rights Film Festival (Lithuania, 2015)
Vermont International Film Festival (USA, 2015)
Gender Bender Festival (Italy, 2015)
Florence Queer Festival  (Italy, 2015)
Side by Side LGBT International Film Festival (Russia, 2015)
Face à Face LGTB Film Festival (Russia, 2015)
Festival International de Programmes Audiovisuels (France, 2015)
FIFA Montreal (Canada, 2015)



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