Al Lewis is a director and producer based between Amsterdam and London.
Most recently she has produced two television series for Vice Studios and directed award winning work for WeTransfer and Dazed. She has also produced work for BBC, The BFI, The Guardian, VICE, Refinery29 and Boiler Room.
She aims to create work that has a cultural impact and stimulates dialogue around issues she feels strongly about, offering a platform to unheard voices. Her work has premiered at Sheffield Documentary festival, CPX documentary festival and other screenings across the world.
2020 is a different kind of Pride. Unable to strip off on the canals or party in the streets, we were left with the time to reflect and feel thankful that in Amsterdam the queer community is free to celebrate. After a conversation with my housemate and her girlfriend discussing the momentum behind the Black Lives Matter movement and the origins of Pride, we felt there was an opportunity to make something that captured this year’s feel for Pride and reconnect with its roots in activism.
I wanted to centre the focus on protest – on the human rights struggle the queer community is still up against today. I wanted to make a film that amplified the powerful queer voices in Amsterdam, but to do so in a way that not only showed this message and this community as powerful, but beautiful.
I combined my usual work in documentary with an elevated reality, giving the real stories space to sing. Everyone featured in the film has their own story. Asylum seekers, club kids, trafficking victims, designers, dragtavists and sex workers. Showing the LGBTQIA+ in all its dimensions whilst putting emphasis on where there’s still work to be done.
Working with an almost all-queer crew was an amazing experience. Because everyone there felt personally connected to the film the atmosphere on set was unlike anything I’d experienced, and working amongst so many nationalities, identities and gender expressions was really, really special.