Things like this director on the start of a gay romance that isn’t about coming out

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Over time, more and more under-represented communities, including the LGBTQ + community, are starting to tell their stories in the entertainment space. Actor Max Talisman is a champion of diversity and representation, and his next film is a game changer. Talisman debuts as a screenwriter and director with Things like that, a gay love story that doesn’t talk about coming out.

Things like that begins production this fall, and I got to sit down with Max Talisman who is the screenwriter, director and star of the film for an interview with CinemaBlend. Wearing multiple hats allows Talisman great creative control, allowing him to tell this story in the best possible way. Here’s what he shared about the story of Things like that:

We’ve never had a movie with a gay protagonist who doesn’t talk about coming out. We’ve had movies about the coming out process, but the truth is, the coming out process is the very beginning of your life as a gay person or as a member of the LGBTQ community. I needed a movie about what happens next. Falling in love, when you’re someone who comes out, is not actually part of your image because it changes things. It changes the range, it changes the capacity, it makes things different. And so this film did not exist. I had to write it down. It does not deal with the exit. It is about two young men who fall in love with each other and who happen to be homosexual.

As a hopeless romantic, I’m already deep into any love story, but as an LGBTQ + ally, I feel both the importance and the excitement of Max Talisman’s lyrics to bring this out. film in the world. He mentioned Love, Simon and The happiest season as examples of positive portrayal of homosexual characters and that he identified with parts of each of these stories, but Things like that will take place after the coming out experience, which is just as important to highlight.

Max Talisman also spoke about the TV series Happy endings, Noting him as “one of the best portrayals of a gay person” because friends of the character on the show don’t care if he’s gay. Ultimately, that’s what most marginalized communities are looking for: belonging. Not to be classified as “other” but to exist as a member of the group, and that is exactly what the characters in Talisman’s Things like that will accomplish. Here’s what he wants people to leave after seeing his movie:

What I want people to remember is that all love is universal. Love feelings are universal. The fear of love is universal. Anxiety, excitement, just the feeling of falling in love. We haven’t had a story that’s told just from the perspective of someone who just happens to be a gay man, you know, or who just happens to be a gay man out of the closet. But I want the world to know that it doesn’t change the fact that this movie can be watched by anyone in the world and can be felt. You can feel represented. I mean, that’s the trick. I felt represented by straight stories for years. I felt like I was seeing things that I identified with and now I want people to feel like seeing things that they relate to, but just in a gay story.

I can’t wait to see Things like that. It’s currently in development and will go into production this fall, so check back regularly to CinemaBlend for updates. While you wait, check out these 2021 love stories and it’s never too early to plan your Pride Month Movie Marathon.

Photo credit: Bonnie Nichoalds

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