PHILADELPHIA, Pa. — Temple University film student Hansen Bursic’s documentary The Toothmans has been selected to screen at Frameline42, the nation’s oldest and largest LGBT film festival. The event takes place every June in San Francisco and attracts upwards of 80,000 attendees, making it the largest LGBT film festival in the world. The Toothmans centers on Cooper Toothman, a young transgender girl living in rural Pennsylvania, and her family, as they navigate the difficulties surrounding her transition and the opposition she has faced in her school district.
“This story is very timely and incredibly important in a media landscape where these stories are just not told. Too many of the already-limited trans stories focus on urban trans experiences,” Bursic said. “This story provides insight into the life and experiences of a transgender person living in a rural area. From the moment I met Cooper’s family their story has touched me in a way that no other film I’ve worked on has. I am so excited to bring this necessary and inspiring story to San Francisco and a global audience.”
The Toothmans was made for the Pennsylvania Youth Congress, PA’s first and only statewide LGBTQ youth organization, as part of a documentary series on rural trans youth. Bursic is PYC’s Lead Media Coordinator, spearheading social media strategy and online video content. He is originally from Fox Chapel, outside Pittsburgh, and is a rising junior at Temple University in Philadelphia. Bursic will be attending Frameline along with members of the Toothman family. Bursic is among the youngest filmmakers to have their work featured in a non-youth category at the Frameline festival.
The Toothmans has previously screened at the Lancaster International Short Film Festival (winning Best Documentary), the Women’s Film Festival of Philadelphia, and the Pittsburgh Underground Film Festival (winning audience favorite).
The 42nd Frameline Festival will screen The Toothmans on Sunday, June 17th at 1:45pm at the Victoria Theater (2961 16th Street, San Francisco, CA).