Acclaimed queer filmmaker Maris Curran debuts feature docfilm “JEANNETTE at Outfest2022

By Oliver Carnay

From acclaimed queer filmmaker Maris Curran (Five Nights in Maine), JEANNETTE is an intimate vérité documentary about a survivor of the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando. A lesbian Puerto Rican and single mother, Jeannette is a competitive bodybuilder who uses her unforgettable strength to transform her life as she struggles to heal in the aftermath of trauma.

Jeannette is unlike any character we’ve seen depicted on screen before; she’s a competitive bodybuilder and lesbian single mother who struggles to cope with trauma after surviving a mass shooting. The film begins in the aftermath of the Pulse nightclub massacre and follows Jeannette as she recovers, backslides and eventually finds support and healing through community. The film provides a window into Jeannette’s life — her strained relationship with her mother, her identity as a lesbian and mother to her teenage son and her roots in Puerto Rico. Taking a vérité approach, director Maris Curran creates an indelible window into one woman’s life — her strength and vulnerability — in the aftermath of trauma. 

JEANNETTE is a film about resilience that gives an audience the opportunity to move past the headlines and ask: in the wake of tragedy, how do we move toward wholeness?

Said director Maris Curran, “I set out to create an intensely intimate film that honestly reflects Jeannette’s world. The film is a manifestation of a relationship Jeannette and I forged over four and a half years. The gaze of this film is from one woman looking directly to another.”

JEANNETTE is the feature documentary directorial debut of acclaimed queer filmmaker Maris Curran, whose films have shown at Berlinale, TIFF, MoMA, the NY Times Op-Docs, and PBS’s Independent Lens. Among her films are her feature narrative debut, Five Nights in Maine (2016) starring David Oyelowo, Diane Wiest, and Rosie Perez; and two documentary shorts, The Man Is the Music (2016) and While I Yet Live (2018). She holds an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, was a Fulbright Fellow, and is the past recipient of an SFFILM/KRF Filmmaking Grant.

After successful screenings at SFIF (World Premiere, Winner – Doc Audience Award) and Frameline, JEANNETTE will premiere at Outfest and play festivals throughout the year.

JEANNETTE will be playing at Outfest 2022 on July 20, 2022 7:15 p.m. at the Directors Guild of America, Theater 2.  Online streaming for this film is also available from July 21, 8 a.m. and will end on July 23. 

For tickets and more information, please go to