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In Search of Avery Willard (2012)

Illuminates the life and work of a groundbreaking, yet forgotten, artist Avery Willard - photographer, filmmaker, writer, publisher, leatherman, pornographer.


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Credited cast:
Henry Arango
James Bidgood
John Cox
Jeffrey Escoffier
Joe E. Jeffreys
Agosto Machado


IN SEARCH OF AVERY WILLARD is a portrait of one of queer art's most elusive innovators. Broadway photographer, physique artist, gay activist, experimental filmmaker, drag historian, leatherman, pornographer: New York City artist Avery Willard produced a lifetime of historically significant work that has remained widely unseen for decades. Through rare interviews with collaborators, friends and preeminent film historians, documentarian Cary Kehayan traces Willard's provocative career from the 1940s through the 1990s. Featuring never-before-seen archival films & photographs, this revealing documentary tells the story of a lost trailblazer of the queer art movement - a man who was as ambitious as he was self-sabotaging. Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

19 June 2012 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


Willard did his physique and leather photography under the pseudonym Bruce King, under which he also started "Gay Scene", the first gay magazine in NYC. See more »


Featured in Keep the Lights On (2012) See more »

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User Reviews

Poorly done documentary short
19 June 2012 | by See all my reviews

Saw this at the Provincetown Film Festival in a collection of shorts. It talks about an unknown gay pioneer named Avery Willard. It slowly (WAY too slowly) explains who he was and why we should care. The problem is we should have been told at the beginning of the short not have it slowly given to us! I was thoroughly bored and confused halfway through and kept wondering why I should care. From what I remember the guy liked drag AND leather also which is very unusual. That was interesting but I found out too late. As I said, I was bored. Also they make him seem like a vicious, cruel guy. Why should I care about him? Good thing it's a short. A long one would have been unbearable! A 1 all the way.

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