Thursday May 9th - 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
21c Main Gallery Stage
3.4% of our American population identify as LGBTQ. However, a recent study from the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in media revealed that over the past decade of the top 100 largest grossing family films in the U.S, less than 1% of all lead characters were LGBTQ.
This panel will look at the presence of LGBTQ+ characters and stories on screen, as well as what the future now looks like for gay, lesbian, and trans filmmakers and their projects at our multiplexes, arthouses, and on our TV screens.
Craig Robinson is Executive Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer for NBCUniversal. He reports directly to NBCUniversal CEO Steve Burke.
Robinson is responsible for defining and building a corporate culture that values diversity of backgrounds, talent, experiences and ideas across the company’s portfolio. He serves as the main liaison between NBCUniversal and key local and national organizations, collaborates with the businesses to foster an inclusive work environment, oversees the company’s eight internal Employee Resource Groups and co-leads the industry-leading Comcast NBCUniversal Joint Diversity Council.
Frankie J. Grande
Frankie J. Grande is a host, performer, producer, reality tv personality and "social media mogul." He became known to the world as a stand-out finalist on the hit CBS series, Big Brother 16. His guest-starring roles on Nickelodeon's Henry Danger, Netflix's Haters Back Off, and Ru Paul's Drag Race, have shown that he continues to be a fan favorite. Frankie has also starred on Broadway as Franz in the closing cast of Rock of Ages and made his debut with the mega-hit, Mamma Mia!. His philanthropic work includes co-founding the non-profit arts organization "Broadway in South Africa" and working with buildOn, for which he was awarded their Global Impact Award. He's currently devoting much of his time and energy to supporting the Los Angeles LGBT Center. @frankiejgrande
Jeremy Blacklow joined GLAAD in 2017 as Director of Entertainment Media, where he serves as a liaison between GLAAD and the film, television, music, comic book, and gaming sectors, working to ensure that the industry is equipped to leverage GLAAD’s research and resources to bring about fair, inclusive, accurate, and diverse representations of LGBTQ people and issues. In this role, he provides strategic counsel and manages key campaigns that bring the power of the industry to bear in order to accelerate acceptance for LGBTQ people.
Carly Usdin is an award-winning filmmaker based in Los Angeles. Her first feature, "Suicide Kale," won the Audience Award for Best First Feature at Outfest 2016. After playing over 30 festivals worldwide the film is now available on iTunes and Amazon Prime. Carly is also the creator and writer of two comic book series for BOOM! Studios: "Heavy Vinyl" and "The Avant-Guards." Heavy Vinyl was nominated for a 2018 Prism award, honoring the best in LGBTQAI+ comics. Her short film "Misdirection" was completed last year as part of the American Film Institute's Directing Workshop for Women.
Danica Breton Cialone
Danica Cialone is the Global Expansion Lead for Johnson & Johnson CARE WITH PRIDE® - working to champion love, equality and care for all members of the LGBTQ community. She works to build authentic connections between J&J brands and the LGBTQ community by establishing partnerships with LGBTQ leaders, influencers, and organizations. Her past work has garnered over 100 million impressions, and she is now focusing on scaling the program globally. Danica balances her CARE WITH PRIDE® responsibilities with her role as an Associate Brand Manager for ZYRTEC®. Danica holds a B.B.A. from Villanova University. She lives in Philadelphia with her husband John.
Tamara M. Williams is a NY based Actor/Dancer/Writer. She is best known for her roles in FX’s “Pose” as Summer, she has also appeared in “Eve’s Song” at the Public Theatre. She choreographed for New York Times Critics pick play “Street Children”. She Studied Performance as a child at Harlem School of The Arts.