THE LAVENDER SCARE
THE LAVENDER SCARE. Frank Kameny Picketing:  Frank Kameny leads a picket line in front of Independence Hall in Philadelphia on July 4, 1965.  Forty activists joined the protest, making it (at the time) the largest public demonstration for LGBT rights in world history.

The Lavender Scare, the award-winning documentary film tells the story of the vicious witch hunt where tens of thousands of gay men and lesbians were fired from their jobs in a decades-long effort by the U.S. government to rid the federal workforce of homosexuals.

THE LAVENDER SCARE. First White House Protest: The U.S. government’s anti-gay witch hunts helped ignite the gay rights movement years before the Stonewall riots. This 1965 picket in front of the White House in Washington D.C. was the first demonstration of its kind.
THE LAVENDER SCARE. First White House Protest: The U.S. government’s anti-gay witch hunts helped ignite the gay rights movement years before the Stonewall riots. This 1965 picket in front of the White House in Washington D.C. was the first demonstration of its kind.

Timed to the 50-year anniversary of Stonewall, The Lavender Scare narrated by Glenn Close, and featuring the voices of Cynthia Nixon, Zachary Quinto, T.R. Knight, and David Hyde Pierce, will open theatrically in New York (Cinema Village) and Los Angeles (Laemmle Music Hall) on Friday, June 7, 2019, with a national release to follow.

With the United States gripped in the panic of the 1950s Cold War, President Dwight D. Eisenhower deemed homosexuals to be “security risks” and vowed to rid the federal government of all employees discovered to be gay or lesbian.

The Lavender Scare. Headline: The U.S. government’s witch hunt of gay men and lesbians was front page news in the 1940s and 1950s. But as the firings continued well into the 1980s and ‘90s they would draw less and less attention.
The Lavender Scare. Headline: The U.S. government’s witch hunt of gay men and lesbians was front page news in the 1940s and 1950s. But as the firings continued well into the 1980s and ‘90s they would draw less and less attention.

Over the next four decades,the longest witch-hunt in American history, tens of thousands of government workers would lose their jobs for no reason other than their sexual orientation.

But the mass firings have an unintended effect: they stirred outrage in the gay community, helped ignite the gay rights movement, and thrust an unlikely hero into the forefront of the LGBTQ fight for equality.Partly based on the award-winning book by historian David K. Johnson, THE LAVENDER SCARE illuminates a little-known chapter of American history, and serves as a timely reminder of the value of vigilance and social action when civil liberties are under attack.

Director Josh Howard is a producer and broadcast executive with more than 25 years of experience in news and documentary production. He has been honored with 24 Emmy Awards, mostly for his work on the CBS News broadcast 60 Minutes.

As Vice President of Long Form Programming for CNBC, he created a unit that produced a series of award-winning documentaries focusing on American business. The 90-minute film Big Brother, Big Business, which explored the ways in which corporate America works hand-in-hand with the government to collect information about the personal habits of private citizens, won the Emmy Award for Best Documentary on a Business Topic, one of three Emmy Awards he earned for CNBC.

Trailer: THE LAVENDER SCARE

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