The GLAAD Wrap: 'Rafiki' in theaters, Lena Waithe's 'Twenties' headed to BET, 'Pose' and 'Steven Universe' receive Peabody awards, and more!

Every week, The GLAAD Wrap brings you LGBTQ-related entertainment news highlights, fresh stuff to watch out for, and fun diversions to help you kick off the weekend.

1) Rafiki, a lesbian love story set in Kenya, opens in theaters in the U.S. today. The film, which was critically lauded during its run at film festivals, takes place in Nairobi, where the daughters of two political rivals begin a romantic relationship. The film went through a legal battle last year to be allowed a legal release in Kenya, where being LGBTQ is still criminalized. Rafiki will be released in theaters in New York and Toronto today, and then spread out further to theaters in the coming months. Click here to see when the film is coming to your city. 

2) A trailer has been released for the upcoming film Vita and Virginia, a love story between the famous writer Virginia Woolf and poet Vita Sackville-West. Based on love letters between the two, the film follows the couple over the course of several years as their love affair grows. The film will be released on July 5 in the UK, but a U.S. release date is still unknown.

3) Out bisexual actress Stephanie Beatriz has been cast in the film adaptation of the Lin Manuel-Miranda musical In the Heights. Beatriz will play hairstylist Carla in the adaptation of the Tony Award-winning musical, and she joins a cast including Daphne Rubin-Vega, Dascha Polanco, Jimmy Smits, Anthony Ramos, and more.

4) In more Broadway-adjacent news, Ryan Murphy has announced that a film adaptation of last year’s Broadway revival of The Boys in the Band is coming to Netflix in 2020. The film will reunite the stars which include out talent Jim Parsons, Zachary Quinto, Andrew Rannells, Matt Bomer, Charlie Carver, and more. The play centers on a group of gay men in the ‘60s.

5) A trailer has been released for the documentary Changing the Game, premiering at Tribeca next week. The documentary focuses on transgender high school athletes fighting for inclusion and equality. It follows wrestler Mack Beggs who wants to be able to wrestle other men, track star Andraya, and skiier and policymaker Sarah. The film will premiere at Tribeca on April 26.

6) The trailer has been released for documentary XY Chelsea, which follows whistleblower Chelsea Manning, a transgender woman whose sentence was commuted in 2017 by Barack Obama. The film will follow Manning’s personal history, as well as her larger fight for transgender rights and visibility. The documentary will also premiere at Tribeca next week, before airing on Showtime on June 7. A trailer was also released for documentary Halston about the influential gay fashion designer. Halston premiered at Sundance and is also showing at Tribeca, before its theatrical release in late May. Watch the trailer here. 

7) Out actress, writer, and producer Lena Waithe has been cast in season three of HBO’s Westworld. Her character is unknown for now, and the show is expected to return in 2020. Also this week, it was announced that Waithe’s comedy series Twenties has been picked up for a first season by BET. Created by Waithe and based on her own life in her 20s, the eight-episode half-hour series follows the adventures of a queer black girl, Hattie, and her two straight best friends, Marie and Nia, who spend most of their days talking trash and chasing their dreams.

8) The prestigious Peabody Award winners have been announced, which include the groundbreaking GLAAD Media Award-nominated show Pose, and GLAAD Media Award recipients Nanette and Steven Universe, as well as inclusive shows The End of the F***ing World, The Good Place, and Killing Eve. Pose has also received a Television Academy Honor, which recognizes programs that use the power of television to inspire social change.

9) Out rapper and frontman of GLAAD Media Award-nominated group BROCKHAMPTON, Kevin Abstract, released a new EP Ghettobaby this week. The EP is available to buy and stream here, and the music video is below. Another out Kevin, Kevin McHale of Glee fame, debuted a new music video for his single “Help Me Now,” which features a guest appearance by his real-life boyfriend Austin P. McKenzie (When We Rise). Watch the video here!

10) Queer singer Kehlani released a new music video for her song RPG off of her recent mixtape “While We Wait.” The video features rapper 6lack and is inspired by the inclusive Netflix show, The OA. Out singer Lucy Spraggan released a new single, her song “Lucky Stars,” of off her upcoming album Today Was a Good Day. Listen to the song here, and catch the album on May 3.

11) Queer singer Halsey was featured on K-pop super group BTS’s new song “Boy With Luv,” the video was released on Friday. It has now reached the record for most viewed video within the first 24 hours of being released on YouTube. Check out the video below.

12) Out actor and singer Ben Platt released a new music video for his song “Older” off of his album Sing to Me Instead, which is out everywhere. Watch the video below! Out Canadian singer Mathew V has also released a new music video, for his single “Catching Feelings.” Watch the video here, and download the single here.

13) The Power of Mercy is an upcoming comic book about queer superhero of color, which is currently seeking funding. The book tells the story of Mai Redstone who puts on a costume to become the crime-fighting Mercy, and also has a romance with another woman, Xóchitl. Click here to learn more and contribute to the project.