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Film producer Christine Vachon is on her way to RIC

Sophia Gurrier, A&E Editor

    Acclaimed film producer Christine Vachon will be visiting Rhode Island College this Thursday Oct. 24 at Gaige Auditorium at 4p.m.

    Vachon is recognized as producing significant films in independent cinema and is considered a pioneer of new queer cinema, a movement specified for queer-themed films. One of her most notable films include “Poison”, a Todd Haynes directed film that claimed the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival in 1991. Among Vachon’s filmography are “Far from Heaven” which had been nominated for four Acadedmy Awards and “Boys Don’t Cry”, a biographical film about a transgender man starring Hilary Swank, which resulted in Swank winning an Oscar for “Best Actress”. 

    The Ocean State Film Society, RIC’s student film club, has been presenting Vachon’s films in a six-week long series that has led up to her arrival this Thursday. The series is a complement to RIC professor Roz Sibielski’s course “Queer Cinema” and the film studies department focused on having Vachon guest speak at RIC this year. Vachon’s visit was made possible through the support of the RIC Foundation and the Committee on College Lectures. 

    “Christine Vachon is among that small handful of well-known producers currently working in the U.S. film industry is a testament to just how influential the films that she has produced have been both on U.S. cinema and on U.S. culture, but in the case of Vachon's films, it is less because of box office and more because of how artistically innovative and socially relevant the majority of those films have been,” said Sibielski, “The fact that she works entirely outside of the Hollywood studio system and has still managed to produce a large number of films that have had a deep impact both culturally and cinematically is an indication of just how significant a figure she is in contemporary U.S. cinema.”

    Vachon also founded independent production company, Killer Films, that has produced numerous pivotal independent films including 2014 release “Still Alice” and 2015’s “Carol”, both receiving Academy Award recognitions with “Still Alice” winning “Best Actress”. Killer Films also executive produced HBO miniseries “Mildred Pierce” which Vachon was Emmy nominated for “Outstanding Miniseries or Movie” and the series itself hoisted five Emmys.

    “She's likely the single-most important figure for contemporary queer cinema, but she's also extraordinary because she's involved in film preservation and restoration. This is an incredible opportunity to meet a monumental yet totally down-to-earth superstar of cinema,” said Vincent Bohlinger, director of RIC Film Studies. 

    On Wednesday, Oct. 23, there will be a screening of two Vachon directed films titled “A Man in Your Room” and “The Way of the Wicked” in preparation for her visit the following day. They will be presented in Horace Mann 193 at 6pm.