Index Screening schedule

I Am Divine

Jeffrey Schwarz, USA 2013, 90’
Hairspray John Waters: masterclass

Before you ask, the filmmakers of I Am Divine don’t shun describing the backstage of one of the most famous scenes in the history of cinema. Moreover, the circumstances surrounding the consumption of dog poop, to which the drag queen Divine indulges in the finale of the iconic Pink Flamingos, are discussed in vivid detail. However, I Am Divine is not an attempt to present the titular character, whose real name is Harris Milstead, as a freak ready for anything. Director Jeffrey Schwarz sees Milstead primarily as an outsider who can tame his complexes and turn otherness into a passport fame. Affirmative, even if not totally without bitterness, the tone of I Am Divine is an achievement not only of Divine, but also his surroundings. Schwartz's interviewees include John Waters, Divine's friend who "discovered" him, who talks about their joint adventures with his inherent eloquence. A separate reason I Am Divine is worthwhile, is the participation of Divine's mother, Frances Milstead, who died shortly after the shooting.

Piotr Czerkawski

Jeffrey Schwarz

Jeffrey Schwartz was born in New York in 1951 and is an award-winning director, producer and film editor. He is the founder of the Automat Pictures production company. Schwartz's documentaries often portray rebellious, independent and controversial artists such as producer and director William Castle and porn star Jack Wrangler. In 2015, he received the Frameline Award given to artists who take up LGBT themes in their work.

Selected filmography

2007 Spine Tingler! The William Castle Story (doc.)

2008 Wrangler: Anatomy of an Icon (doc.)

2011 Vito (doc.)

2013 I Am Divine (doc.)

2014 Tab Hunter Confidential (doc.)

2017 The Fabulous Allan Carr (doc.)

Cast & Crew

director Jeffrey Schwarz
screenplay Jeffrey Schwarz
cinematography John Chater, John Davis, Dan DeJesus, David A. Ford, Marsha Kham, Cameron MacDonald, James Mulryan, Elle Schneider, Steven Wacks, Clay Westervelt
editing Phillip J. Bartell
music Michael Cudahy
cast John Waters, Divine, Frances Milstead, Mink Stole, Mary Vivian Pearce, Vincent Peranio
producer Jon Glover, Lotti Pharriss Knowles, Lance Robertson, Jeffrey Schwartz
production Automat Pictures, Making it Big
sales The Film Collaborative
language English
coloration colour
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