8.1/10
5,446
35 user 22 critic

Paris Is Burning (1990)

A chronicle of New York's drag scene in the 1980s, focusing on balls, voguing and the ambitions and dreams of those who gave the era its warmth and vitality.

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16 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Brooke Xtravaganza ...
(as Carmen and Brooke)
André Christian
Dorian Corey
Paris Duprée
Junior Labeija
Willi Ninja
Sandy Ninja
Kim Pendavis
Freddie Pendavis
Sol Pendavis
Avis Pendavis
Octavia St. Laurent ...
(as Octavia Saint Laurent)
Stevie Saint Laurent
Anji Xtravaganza ...
(as Angie Xtravaganza)
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Storyline

This is a documentary of 'drag nights' among New York's underclass. Queens are interviewed and observed preparing for and competing in many 'balls'. The people, the clothes, and the whole environment are outlandish. Written by Robbie Smith <robsmith@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Having a ball...wish you were here

Genres:

Documentary

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

Language:

Release Date:

August 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Children Are  »

Box Office

Budget:

$500,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$3,779,620 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A young Pepper LaBeija can be seen very briefly as a contestant in the 1968 documentary The Queen, about a drag beauty pageant held in New York City. The legendary Crystal LaBeija, original mother and founder of the House of LaBeija, is also featured giving a fierce and shady reading. See more »

Quotes

Dorian Corey: I always had hopes of being a big star. But as you get older, you aim a little lower. Everybody wants to make an impression, some mark upon the world. Then you think, you've made a mark on the world if you just get through it, and a few people remember your name. Then you've left a mark. You don't have to bend the whole world. I think it's better to just enjoy it. Pay your dues, and just enjoy it. If you shoot an arrow and it goes real high, hooray for you.
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Connections

Featured in 50 Documentaries to See Before You Die: Episode 4 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Got To Be Real
Written by Cheryl Lynn (as C. Lynn), David Paich (as D. Paich) and David Foster (as D. Foster)
Performed by Cheryl Lynn
Courtesy of Cheryl Lynn Productions
Published by Cotaba Music, administered by Peermusic, Ltd. (BMI)/Butterfly Gong Music (BMI)
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User Reviews

 
Some answers as to where they are now.....
25 November 2004 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

While many unfortunately passed on, the ballroom scene is still very much alive and carrying on their legacy. Some are still very much alive and quite well, Octavia is more radiant and beautiful than ever, Willi Ninja is very accomplished and gives a great deal of support to the gay community as a whole, Pepper Labeija just passed on last year of natural cause, may she rest in peace. After Anji's passing Carmen became the mother of the house of Xtravaganza (she was in the beach scene) and she is looking more and more lovely as well. Some balls have categories dedicated to those who have passed, may they all rest in peace. There is currently another project underway known as "How Do I Look?", you can check out the website at www.howdoilooknyc.org.


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