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Forever's Gonna Start Tonight

Forever’s Gonna Start Tonight chronicles the remarkable experiences of Vicki Marlane, a drag performer still strutting it onstage in her seventies. Vicki takes us on the ride of her life — from rollerskating crossdressed in her youth, to hoochie-coochie girl carnival sideshows and romantic road trips. We hitchhike through the adventures that led to her being San Francisco’s “Toast of the Town” in the early ’70s, and Vicki even shares her tips of the trade acquired from decades of drag experience at hot-spot venues including Aunt Charlie’s in the Tenderloin District. Directed by Michelle Lawler, and produced by archivist and historian Kim Klausner (It’s Elementary:Talking About Gay Issues In School, Frameline20) and Emmy Award-winning Susan Stryker (Screaming Queens: The Riot at Compton’s Cafeteria, Frameline30), this film is a loving tribute to a legend.

Forever’s Gonna Start Tonight will be held on August 24th; reception at 6:30pm, screening at 7pm followed by a discussion with producers Susan Stryker and Kim Klausner.


This event is part of our Compton’s Film Series: Queens to the Front, a four-event series culminating in a final workshop of The Compton’s Cafeteria Riot, an interactive play directly inspired by the 1966 riot, produced by the Tenderloin Museum.

In the summer of 1966, a drag queen patron of the Tenderloin’s Compton’s Cafeteria threw her cup of hot coffee in the face of an police officer as he made an unwarranted attempted to arrest her. The riot that followed would be come to known as the United States’ first recorded act of militant queer resistance to social oppression and police harassment in history. Three years before the famous gay riot at New York’s Stonewall Inn, the neighborhood’s drag queens and allies banded together to fight back against their ongoing discrimination, beating the cops with their high heels and throwing furniture out of the cafeteria windows.

The Compton’s Film Series: Queens to the Front will consist of works created as a response to the story of Compton’s, the movement that followed, and the Tenderloin’s continued support of queer communities. This history is an integral component of the neighborhood’s identity, and we are honored to recognize the individuals whose tenacious spirit spawned a movement against the long history of discrimination and violence.


Compton’s Film Series: Queens to the Front

8/16: The Screaming Queens: The Riot at Compton’s Cafeteria

8/24: Forever’s Gonna Start Tonight

9/14: Beautiful by Night + Queens At Heart 

9/26: The Compton’s Cafeteria Riot, A Workshop