The Watermelon Woman, 20 Years Later: An Interview with Professor Cheryl Dunye

Monday, May 02, 2016
HOODLINE (SAN FRANCISCO) -- In what Philadelphia’s The City Paper described as “fast and loose, breathless and beautiful,” local filmmaker Cheryl Dunye’s “The Watermelon Woman” will be screened on Sunday afternoon at the Castro Theatre, 20 years after it first premiered in the same theater. The film, which according to City Paper includes the “the hottest dyke sex scene ever recorded on celluloid,” will help to usher in the final week of the 59th San Francisco Film Festival. We caught up with director Cheryl Dunye, who is an assistant professor at San Francisco State University, to talk about her film and about her perception of the Castro since “The Watermelon Woman” first premiered two decades ago. In 1996, “The Watermelon Woman” was Dunye’s first feature-length film. The film was recently honored as one of three OutFest UCLA Legacy Project films, and granted a pristine 2K remastering for re-release. The film is currently being honored with a series of 20th anniversary screenings.