Ann Arbor Film Festival to kick off Pride Month with virtual happy hour June 4

The virtual happy hour celebration will include guests Rusty Tidenberg and "Why Can't I Be Me? Around You" filmmaker Harrod Blank . Photo courtesy of Ann Arbor Film Festival. (Les Blank Films)

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The Ann Arbor Film Festival will celebrate Pride Month by hosting a virtual happy hour at 7 p.m. on June 4.

Taking place through Zoom, the virtual happy hour will feature Rusty Tidenberg, subject of the documentary “Why Can’t I Be Me? Around You” as well as film director Harrod Blank.

“Why Can’t I Be Me? Around You” focuses on the eight years of Tidenberg’s life after she comes out to her family and friends. Through following Tidenberg’s life, audiences are guided through the aftermath as well as the romantic and professional impacts of her transition in her Albuquerque, NM community.

Leslie Raymond, director of the Ann Arbor Film Festival and Martin Contreras and Keith Orr, former owners of \aut\ Bar will host the celebration.

The documentary won the \aut\ FILM Award for Best LGBTQ Film at this year’s virtual Ann Arbor Film Festival.

“Why Can’t I Be Me? Around You” is currently available for rent through Michigan Theater. The film costs $10 with the discount code AAFF-PRIDE!, which is valid through June 4. Admission to the event is included in the cost of renting the film.

Find the movie here.

Those who have already rented the film can attend the event for free and will be sent a link and password to the event according to a news release.

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