The box office in 2017 was the worst year for ticket sales in over two decades. Many people, even self-proclaimed cinephiles like me, didn’t make it out to the theater much last year for a number of reasons. Sequel, reboot, and just plain crappy movie fatigue has driven would-be moviegoers to stay home. Not to mention, with the plethora of options shoved in our face from Netflix, HBO, Hulu, what have you… there’s more reason than ever to stay home.
In 2015, WUSSY in conjunction with Scoutmob and Bill Kaelin Marketing, began showing classic queer films like Paris Is Burning, Xanadu, and Troop Beverly Hills at the Plaza Atlanta. In its latest iteration, #WussyWednesday is a monthly screening event where hundreds of LGBTQ+ identifying folks and allies come together in a midnight-movie style gathering and enjoy their favorite queer cult classics.
People, especially those who are queer-identifying, need community now more than ever, and many have found that with Wussy Wednesdays. It’s a weekday, so you’re not gonna get too rowdy or drunk (hopefully). It’s a movie, so you’re seated and relaxed, unless you’re one of the dozens who interact and quote the movie while it plays. One of the biggest aspects of the Wussy Wednesday screenings is that they’re communal and interactive. Wanna shout at the screen? Do it. Wanna dance during your favorite part? By all means! Safe(r) spaces are not reserved for bars or clubs—they can be movie theaters, and there isn’t a better theatre in town than the Plaza.
It’s an event, y’all. There’s a costume contest and (sometimes) a photobooth, which encourages moviegoers to show up in their best looks, often themed after the film. Imagine something like a midnight Rocky Horror Picture Show showing (which The Plaza offers on Friday night), but at 8pm on a Wednesday and everyone looks queer as hell.
Last month, a screening of Spice World sold out so a second showing was added, proving that Wussy Wednesday is only getting more popular. On April 25th, the Plaza will be hosting the next Wussy Wednesday screening of The Birdcage starring Robin Williams, Gene Hackman, and Nathan Lane. (Because the first screening on April 11th sold out.) Personally, I haven’t seen it, but that’s almost the best part! WUSSY also just added a screening of the horror class SCREAM on May 9th.
I hadn’t see Spice World either and seeing fans go wild about something in a movie theater that isn’t a property owned by Disney is heartwarming, and it exposed me to a really fun movie! There’s no Queer Studies course to take in high school, so we have to rely on each other to expose us to films and media that make us more informed members of the community, and I’m so thankful to have a way to connect.
See you on Wednesday!
Tyler Scruggs is a writer and musician living in Atlanta with his partner Mark. When he’s not churning out internet content, he’s paying too much for coffee and buying movie tickets week in advance. Feel free to validate him on Instagram (@Scruggernaut), Twitter (@TylerScruggs), or on Scruff (you'll know it when you see it).