SBS has announced a raft of queer television and film, including Russell T. Davies’ Cucumber / Banana / Tofu trilogy, to celebrate Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras next month.
SBS ONE and SBS 2 will feature Australian premiere dramas and documentaries to complement its coverage of the Mardi Gras Parade hosted by Magda Szubanski, Tom Ballard and Patrick Abboud on Sunday 8 March.
SBS Online, Subscription channel World Movies and SBS Radio will also be getting into the spirit of the annual event.
Tony Abbott’s openly gay sister Christine Forster will talk to The Feed, while there are documentaries on coming out, US court challenges to Proposition 8, and reports on Indigenous and Indonesian gay issues.
SBS serves up a threesome of new queer series from acclaimed UK writer/director Russell T Davies (Queer as Folk) exploring the passions and pitfalls of 21st century gay life.
Premiering on Australian television are Cucumber (pictured) and Banana; two original eight-part, comedy/drama series. Cucumber follows 46-year-old Henry and his long-term boyfriend Lance in the aftermath of ‘the worst date night in history’, while sister series Banana is an outrageous and intriguing peek into the lives of Cucumber’s younger characters as they wade through sexuality and relationships as gay, lesbian, transgender or anything in between.
Rounding out this trio is Tofu, an 8-part factual web series exclusively available on SBS On Demand in March. Fronted by Youtube star Benjamin Cook and also developed by Russell T Davies, Tofu explores modern sex in all its variety through interviews with ordinary members of the public detailing their sexcapades, with sketch comedy, music, animation and a touch of fantasy.
Binge on the full series of Cucumber in a Mardi Gras special on Sunday March 8 online on SBS On Demand, before the series unfolds episode by episode on SBS ONE, Monday nights from 9 March, 11pm. Banana premieres on SBS 2 Friday 13 March, 10.20pm, followed by an encore of Cucumber at 10.50pm.
SBS 2 presents revealing HBO documentary The Out List, Thursday 5 March at 9.30pm. High profile members of the LGBTQI community share the struggles and triumphs of being gay, understanding sexuality and gender and building careers after they’ve come out. The Out List stars a diverse cross-section of leaders from the entertainment, sports, business and public service, including Ellen DeGeneres, Cynthia Nixon, Neil Patrick Harris, Wanda Sykes and professional footballer Wade Davis, sharing their personal stories like never before.
The Case Against 8 premieres on SBS ONE Saturday March 7, 10.40pm. This riveting documentary is an inside look at the events that led up to, and the aftermath of the groundbreaking Supreme Court case which overturned California’s ban on same-sex marriage, Proposition 8.
SBS’s flagship news and current affairs programs delve deeper into some of the most unique and intriguing stories from the LGBTQI community for Mardi Gras season.
SBS 2’s The Feed sits down with Tony Abbott’s openly gay sister Christine Forster, and catches up with Magda Szubanski for a live chat behind the desk on Thursday 5 March, 7.30pm.
SBS Dateline asks what is it like to be transgender in Indonesia – one of the largest Muslim communities in the world with a special report by David O’Shea on Tuesday 10 March SBS ONE, 9.30pm.
NITV News will also feature indigenous LGBTQI stories in the week leading up to the parade.
BEST IN QUEER FILM
SBS celebrates the best in queer cinema from around the globe, with a collection of films that are heartwarming, shocking, dark, funny and surprising.
On Sunday March 1, World Movies packs in an all-night marathon of the finest queer flicks kicking off from 4.45pm, featuring the Australian Television Premieres of Tom At The Farm and Gerontophilia, along with Concussion, Blue Is The Warmest Color and The Exterminating Angels.
From Monday March 2 its Queer Movie Week on SBS 2, with Patrick Abboud hosting a film each night throughout the week, including The Way He Looks, Zoe. Misplaced, Remington and The Curse of the Zombadings, Open Up To Me, Appropriate Behaviour and Geography Club.
The SBS Online Mardi Gras hub is the ultimate web destination for all things Mardi Gras.
The website, along with SBS On Demand, will host a live stream of the parade broadcast on Sunday March 8 from 8.30pm.
SBS Online also has a Mardi Gras Movie Collection with over twenty titles, is the place to catch-up on all the queer films, special reports, documentaries and series airing on TV during the season, as well as web features including a look at what coming out is like in ethnic families and SBS’s own journey to the float.
SBS Online invites everyone to share the spirit of Mardi Gras by posting their Mardi Gras pictures on the website’s Social Wall. During the parade television and online broadcasts, viewer tweets will be displayed on screen using the official event hashtag #sydneymardigras
SBS Radio joins forces with Melbourne LGBTQI station JOY 94.9 to broadcast live from the 2015 Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras parade from 7.00pm, as well an eclectic mix of music, exclusive interviews and special features across the weekend. SBS Radio 3 is broadcast on DAB+, digital TV, online and via the SBS Radio app.