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Screaming Queens at the Roxie Theater

  • The Roxie Theater 3117 16th Street San Francisco, CA, 94103 United States (map)

In honor of the 50th Anniversary of the Compton's Cafeteria Riot we are excited to present a special screening of SCREAMING QUEENS: THE RIOT AT COMPTONS CAFETERIA followed by a Q&A with the directors and other special guests.

Directors Susan Stryker and Victor Silverman's award winning documentary tells the forgotten story of the first collective act of militant resistance to the social oppression of queer people in the United States--a 1966 riot by transgender prostitutes at a late night cafeteria in San Francisco, three years before the famous gay riot at New York's Stonewall Inn.

"It's a hot August night in San Francisco in 1966. Compton's Cafeteria, in the seedy Tenderloin district, is hopping with its usual assortment of transgender people, young street hustlers, and down-and-out regulars. The management, annoyed by the noisy crowd at one table, calls the police. When a surly cop, accustomed to manhandling Compton's clientele, attempts to arrest one of the queens, she throws her coffee in his face. Mayhem erupts -- windows break, furniture flies through the air. Police reinforcements arrive, and the fighting spills into the street. For the first time, the drag queens band together to fight back, getting the better of the cops, whom they kick and stomp with their high-heeled shoes and beat with their heavy purses. For everyone at Compton's that night, one thing was certain -- things would never be the same again."

Directed by Victor Silverman & Susan Stryker. 2005. 57 min. USA

Co-presented with the GLBT Historical Society and the Tenderloin Musuem