The upcoming documentary Upstairs
Inferno from director Robert L. Camina takes a look at the 1973
firebombing of a New Orleans gay bar that left dozens dead.
Forty years ago on June 24, massive
panic broke out when the Upstairs Lounge was firebombed.
Investigators concluded that the fire, which killed 32, was arson,
but no one was ever charged with the crime.
What happened that night and how it set
back the gay rights movement in New Orleans is the subject of
“We don't want the film to simply be
a stagnant exposition of facts,” said Camina. “To truly
understand the impact of this tragedy, you have to find the humanity
in the story and build an emotional connection. The audience will
relive the roller coaster of events through the eyes of those who
lived through it. A full length film will allow us to not only
provide the historical background, but also pay respect to the hearts
in the story.”
“With access to new leads, the film
is pursuing untold avenues of the story. This film will take us on a
journey that will educate, enlighten and hopefully lead us to new
revelations and possibly some closure.” (A trailer for the film is
embedded on this page. Visit
our video library for more videos.)
Producers this week launched an
IndieGoGo fundraising campaign to help defray production costs
for the film.
Camina's previous film, Raid of the
Rainbow Lounge, documented the 2009 police raid of a Dallas-Forth
Worth gay bar which left the local LGBT community stunned.