Kim Wayans, who plays the unaccepting mother of a lesbian teen in Pariah, has said she hopes the film will hit home for parents with gay children.

In the movie, Alike (played by Adepero Oduye), an African-American teen, is living with her conservative parents and sister in Brooklyn's Fort Greene neighborhood as she begins to affirm her identity as a lesbian. Alike is especially eager to find love. (Watch the film's trailer at our video library.)

“She's a very domineering presence in her daughter's life and she wants to control her,” Wayans, 50, said of her character in an interview with Gay Star News. “You have a desperate mother desperate to save her child [from being gay.] She just broke my heart. I didn't see her as a mother or a villain. She was just as much a victim of her beliefs. She was so sad, so sad and so lonely and disconnected from everyone else.”

“It was heartbreaking,” she said.

Wayans added that she hopes the film will touch parents with gay children: “I hope they'll receive it with love and acceptance. I hope it will open eyes for people. I hope it will create dialogue.”

Pariah opens Wednesday in New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles. A six city expansion – San Diego, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Cambridge, Dallas and Seattle – is scheduled for Friday, January 6.