"It was about our lives and that's why we won, because people recognized that lives trump dry, intellectual arguments every time." (From the film)
Part star biography, part social history, this entertaining and moving documentary charts how drag queen Panti Bliss changed Irish history – and set a new standard for the world.
Irish drag queen Panti Bliss and her alter ego Rory O'Neill were catapulted from the fringes of entertainment to the centre of political debate in 2014 after O'Neill spoke about routine homophobia on a TV current-affairs show. Irish conservatives were furious, and the national broadcaster rushed to placate them. O'Neill then took to the stage and delivered an electrifying speech that became a rallying point for the campaign for same-sex marriage in Ireland. Documentarian Conor Horgan had long been following Panti. The film begins as a story of Rory's transformation into an internationally renowned drag queen, but expands into a rich and thoughtful account of cultural change in Ireland. Panti's return to her hometown and subsequent stand-up show will leave you crying through your laughter.
2016 SEATTLE, SYDNEY, DENVER
Irish director Conor Horgan started his career in photography, and later directed over 70 TV commercials. His first short film The Last Times (2002) was screened at international festivals. The Queen of Ireland (2015) is Horgan's first feature documentary.