Out screenwriter Dustin Lance Black
said Tuesday that he “doubted every day” that his Academy
Award-winning film about Harvey Milk would be made.
Tuesday marked 40 years since Milk was
murdered at San Francisco City Hall.
Milk was the first openly gay elected
official of a major U.S. city. He was elected to the San Francisco
Board of Supervisors in 1977 on a pledge to back gay and lesbian
rights. The following year, Milk was killed by Dan White, a former
supervisor, on November 27.
Director Gus Van Sant's 2008 film Milk
was based on Milk's life. Sean Penn played Milk in the film, while
Josh Brolin portrayed White. Black won an Oscar for his screenplay.
In an interview with Focus Features,
the studio which released the film, Black said that during the film's
production “we doubted every day that our green light would last
until we wrapped.”
“For many, the film is increasingly
being seen as the first part of a larger project to revive our lost
history. So much of the rich history of the LGBTQ+ community has
been lost. No, lost is too passive a word. Buried or destroyed is
more accurate,” Black
“Things have changed so massively in
10 years. Back then, getting people interested in stories that just
had an LGBTQ+ character was incredibly difficult, much less a story
that took our lives seriously. A mainstream film that had LGBTQ+
characters at its core seemed impossible. There were few
exceptions,” he added citing Will & Grace, Ellen and
Brokeback Mountain as a few examples.
Black is married to British diver Tom
Daley. Together they recently welcomed their first child.
Daley, Dustin Lance Black say they'll keep son “completely