Pride Month round-up: Programming from Vice, YouTube, PBS, HBO Max

As LGBTQ+ Pride celebrations and events are held around the world this month, broadcasters and streaming services are looking to offer special films, series and new content of their own ...
June 1, 2021

As LGBTQ+ Pride celebrations and events are held around the world this month, broadcasters and streaming services are looking to offer special films, series and new content of their own to help mark the occasion. To ring in Pride Month, Realscreen has collected a lineup of some of the unscripted and documentary programming that’s scheduled to roll out across linear and streaming platforms this month.

The below titles represent just a handful of programs airing throughout June in honor of Pride Month. Each one focuses on LGBTQ+ life and culture, some by honoring its history and others by showcasing modern joys and struggles experienced by LGBTQ people.

Here’s a look at Pride Month programming airing this June:

Vice to premiere Transnational digital series and Vice Versa feature documentary

Millennial-skewing Vice will introduce special content focused on equality and civil rights for LGBTQ Pride Month across their platforms all month.

Beginning this month is Transnational, a Vice World News digital series about transgender rights. The series, hosted by an international team of trans storytellers, explores the joys and struggles that trans people face, and discusses how they are building community.

Vice will also premiere Vice Versa: The Neglected Pandemic, 40 Years of HIV & AIDS on June 2 for Pride Month. The feature documentary is scheduled to mark the 40th anniversary of HIV/AIDS in the United States, and looks at what it’s like to be HIV positive in the U.S. today. The film is narrated by TV personality and author Jonathan Van Ness, and was produced by Vice Studios.

“Our continued coverage of LGBTQ issues across all of our platforms remains paramount to us, especially at a time when certain factions of the country are stripping away rights from the community,” said Nadja Bellan-White, global chief marketing officer, Vice Media Group. “Vice will continue to shine a light on injustices and raise awareness with content that focuses on the hopes and struggles of people across the U.S. and globally.”

Refinery29, a digital media site owned by Vice Media, will launch Queerness Is this month. The month-long series celebrates queer culture. The site is also partnering with Very Good Light to launch a beauty series on Instagram, beginning in June, that will explore topics such as gender fluidity in makeup and using beauty as activism. The bi-weekly series will be hosted by Refinery29 beauty director Sara Tan and Very Good Light founder David Yi.

YouTube, The Trevor Project partner on live streams

YouTube is set to launch two global livestream events this month to raise money and awareness for The Trevor Project, a non-profit organization focused on suicide prevention and crisis intervention for LGBTQ youth.

YouTube Originals will partner with JA Films to premiere a multi-hour livestream event June 25 featuring Trixie Mattel, Daniel Howell, Kim Chi, Monét X Change, Peppermint, Denali Foxx and others.

The global virtual event will feature multiple hosts, musical performances and live moments, with viewers encouraged to donate to The Trevor Project via YouTube’s Donate feature directly on the livestream.

JA Films has created a microsite with a Call To Action asking users and creators to submit video content sharing stories of pride, questions for the hosts and more.  Select responses will then be featured throughout the stream on June 25.

Also slated for this month, a live Minecraft competition will stream exclusively on YouTube Gaming in June featuring creators from around the world with the goal of bringing awareness to mental health issues affecting the LGBTQ+ community, in addition to raising money for the Trevor Project via a donation link.

‘American Masters’ slates Ballerina Boys

PBS strand ‘American Masters’ will premiere the documentary Ballerina Boys this Friday (June 4) in honor of Pride Month.

Ballerina Boys (pictured) is a portrait of Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo (“The Trocks”), an all-male ballet company and international dance sensation.

The film follows The Trocks — inspired by the Stonewall Riots of 1969 — on tour in the Carolinas, an epicenter of continued struggles for LGBTQ rights.

It interweaves original interviews and contemporary and archival performance footage to tell the history of the company and culminates with The Trocks’ 2019 performance at the Stonewall 50th anniversary concert at Central Park’s SummerStage in New York City.

Ballerina Boys is a production of Merrywidow Films in association with American Masters Pictures and ITVS. It is directed and produced by Chana Gazit and Martie Barylick. Michael Kantor is executive producer of ‘American Masters,’ currently in its 34th season.

HBO Max debuts ‘Shine On’ page and Human By Orientation special collection

HBO Max will highlight existing films and series, alongside new performances and interviews, all month to celebrate Pride. The streaming service’s Shine On page will include HBO Max’s full library of LGBTQIA+ stories, characters and creators.

HBO Max’s Human By Orientation site will also offer exclusive access to concerts, clips and interviews through the “Your Pass to Pride 2021″ collection.

Human By Orientation celebrates the LGBTQIA+ community through year-round programming. Following Human By Orientation’s Pride celebration last year that included 15 events in 11 days, its virtual Pride this year will include music performances from artists such as Soccer Mommy, MUNA and King Princess, and comedy specials from comedians including Meg Stalter and Ashley Ray. It will also include behind-the-scenes conversations with people from HBO Max original series, artist spotlights and drag performances from the queens of the reality series We’re Here.

These performances will air on Human By Orientation’s social media handles and in-app on HBO Max. Human By Orientation is also highlighting 30 LGBTQIA+ and civil rights non-profit partners, one per day, all through June.

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