Directed by Lois Siegel

LIP GLOSS is a documentary introducing a behind-the-scenes look at female impersonators.
There's something for everyone: long legs, swivel hips, stuffed girdles, and bouffant hairdos.
LIP GLOSS exposes the lives of transvestites, transsexuals, drag queens and female impersonators.
Shop with them for lingerie and high heels, meet them backstage as they transform from male to female, learn about their
"extracurricular" occupation and family life.


Watch the entire film here (free)

                                                                      

   

WEB NEWS: East end filmmakers flock to indie festival
By Wes Smiderle, Neighbourhood News Staff
Tue, Mar 8, 2005 12:00 PM EST

Lois Siegel, Orléans filmmaker. Photo/Darren Brown

 

Twenty years ago, Lois Siegel spent Halloween night in a Montréal bar with a camera crew and 300 men wearing flamboyant costumes.

"There wasn't even a women's bathroom," recalled Siegel. "One of my crew said, 'Well, there's women here.' I said, 'Look again.' "

Siegel was shooting footage of female impersonators in bars and nightclubs around downtown Montréal. Local drag queen Armand Monroe ("spelled like Marilyn Monroe") was her guide through the city's gender-bending hang-outs.

The result of those excursions is Lip Gloss, a documentary exploring the world of female impersonators in Montréal during the late 1980s. The film, released in 1993, has been screened before in Montréal and England. Ottawa audiences will get a rare chance to see it March 9 when the documentary is shown at the University of Ottawa as part of the 2005 Ottawa Student and Independent Filmmaker Festival (OSIFF).

EAST END FILM HUB

Siegel, a photographer living in Orléans, will be one of four east end representatives showcased in the university's Alumni Auditorium this week. Twenty-one-year-old film student and Fallingbrook resident Christopher Redmond will premiere his 15-minute short satire "The Design of Human Kind" on March 10. "The Walkers," directed by Blackburn Hamlet resident Miles Finlayson, will be screened on March 9. Former Beacon Hill resident and Colonel By High School graduate Anice Wong will screen her 15-minute documentary "Whose Rights Anyway? Justice for Mohamed" on March 10.

Wong, 23, attended high school in Beacon Hill before moving to Toronto where she graduated from film and video studies at York University. Her entry at the OSIFF is a 15-minute documentary on the detention of Mohamed Harkat, an Ottawa resident and refugee from Algeria, who has been held in custody since 2002 on a security certificate.

She's currently working on a follow-up to the film updating Harkat's plight. Wong said she likes how documentaries can inspire viewers and spark debate. "It can introduce people to different subjects and topics they probably would never have thought of before and just bring them a whole new perspective," she said.

Wong's film has been shown at a dozen festivals across Canada. For Redmond the festival screening will be his film's debut.

Redmond describes his film as a satire set in "God's factory" where the individuals designing human beings have an idea to split humans into two versions, an alpha and beta. The film tracks their attempt to "pitch" the idea to the board.

"There's a lot of religious overtones, but it's also a comment on corporate America, the structure of a corporate boardroom," said Redmond.

In order to complete "Design of Human Kind," he had to draw on volunteers and members of Independent Filmmakers Cooperative of Ottawa, an organization who joined in late 2003.

"That's when I discovered there was actually a film community in Ottawa," said Redmond. "I was able to put together a crew that would basically work for free . . . pre-production, production, post-production and distribution were all done for under $1,000."

'SIX-FOOT-SOMETHING GUY TRYING ON HEELS'

Siegel -- who aside from being a filmmaker is also a photographer and a musician with the Lyon Street Celtic Band -- shot and compiled Lip Gloss over a five-year period. The doc debuted at the Montréal World Film Festival in 1993 and was later shown in England at the Eighth London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival.

"That was quite an experience," said Siegel, 58. "I think they were expecting a different look of Montréal. They found it more old-fashioned than avant-garde . . . They were expecting something more exotic, I think."

The scene in Montréal during the late '80s was more restrained than some people might assume. Siegel talked about trying to film a scene at a shoe store featuring Monroe trying on different pairs of high heels. None of the downtown store owners would let them in.

"They didn't want to do it," she said. "They were very uptight."

Siegel and her crew ended up using a mom-and-pop store in St. Anne de Bellevue, a small town on the outskirts of the city where she taught at John Abbott College.

Siegel was friends with the two store owners. She asked the wife, who had no problem with the shoot. The woman neglected to notify her husband who was working there the day Siegel arrived with Monroe and her crew.

"He wasn't expecting us to shoot this six-foot-something guy trying on heels," she said, "but he was very nice about it, completely charming."



                                               

Produced by:

Lois Siegel Productions Inc. with the assistance of The National Film Board of Canada

Starring: Bobette, Black Emmanuelle, Armand Emond, Guilda, Derek MacKinnon, Armand Monroe, Shelley Seear, and Candy Stevens
Camera: Jean-Yves Dion, Stephen Reizes, Glen MacPherson, Daniel Villeneuve, Andrew Nevard
Sound:  Gabor Vadnay, Francois Gingras, Don Cohen, Jeff Shatford, Pierre Bertrand
Music: Rick Vincent, Andre Vincelli, William Charney, Alexander Ary, Bare Bones: Patrick Hutchinson and Suzanne Nuttall
Sound Editor:  Louis Colin
Editor: Lois Siegel
Technique:   Feature Documentary
Format: 75 minutes, 2700 feet, 16mm, optical sound, color
Completed: 1993


Lois was recently guest speaker at St. Andrews Presbyterian College, Laurinburg, North Carolina
She talked about her work as a freelance photographer and showed her
feature documentary film "Lip Gloss" at the
Fortner Writers' Forum


Directed by Lois Siegel

LIP GLOSS is a documentary introducing a behind-the-scenes look at female impersonators.
There's something for everyone: long legs, swivel hips, stuffed girdles, and bouffant hairdos.
LIP GLOSS exposes the lives of transvestites, transsexuals, drag queens and female impersonators.
Shop with them for lingerie and high heels, meet them backstage as they transform from male to female, learn about their "extra curricular" occupation and family life.

Lois was presented with The Twenty-Fourth Annual
Ethel N. Fortner Writer and Community Award
Presented by St. Andrew's Presbyterian College
September 24, 2009

Picture of red lips, lips closed, full.
Female impersonator Grae Phillips
 

star
Home Video

VHS: $25.00 + $8.00 shipping and handling =  $33.00
DVD: $30 + 8.00 shipping and handling =          $38.00

Institutions
VHS: $120.00 + $8.00 shipping and handling = $128.00 US
DVD: $125.00 + $8.00 shipping and handling = $133.00 US

To Order
lois@siegelproductions.ca

Stock footage inquiries


Picture of red lips, lips closed, full.
Outside the Box: Fringe lines up some out of the ordinary acts
by Glenn Crawford


Films


Lois Siegel's Home Page