On April 12, the Sacramento LGBT Community Center, with support from the California Endowment, will present two screenings of “Matt Shepard Is a Friend of Mine” at Sacramento’s Crest Theatre. The documentary was directed by Michele Josue, Shepard’s friend from a Swiss boarding school.
Josue told The Bee in 2013 that she made the documentary about Shepard, the young gay man whose 1998 murder in Wyoming became an emblem of the battle against hate crimes, in response to “seeing the media strip away (Shepard’s) humanity, and him becoming this symbol.”
Shepard was “larger than life, so curious about the world, and loved people so much,” Josue said. Her film, showing at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. at the Crest, contains interviews with other friends and with Judy and Dennis Shepard, Matthew’s parents and founders of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, which advocates for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth.
Judy and Dennis Shepard visited Sacramento last week. Judy Shepard addressed a group of law enforcement officers receiving hate-crimes training and also spoke at Sacramento State.
Zeina Barkawi, a good friend of Matthew Shepard’s who also appears in the film, will be at the Crest screenings and will participate in a panel discussion on hate crimes after the 7:30 p.m. screening.
Tickets are $8-$10 and available at the Crest box office (1013 K St., Sacramento) and through Ticketfly.com. Part of the proceeds will go to the Sacramento LGBT Community Center.
Call The Bee’s Carla Meyer, (916) 321-1118. Follow her on Twitter @CarlaMeyerSB.