WATCH: Short Film 'Mars' Cast & Filmmakers Talk Importance of Queer Joy

Inspired by musician Yungblud’s song with the same name, MARS, is a short film about self-discovery. The film, starring Yasmine Finney, follows a day in the life of Charlie Acaster. All Charlie has ever wanted is a regular teenage existence – at least that’s what she thinks. Now one extraordinary night will make her reassess what truly matters. The short film features a supporting cast of emerging talent as Charlie’s friends and peers, including Leah Choudhry as Maisie and Pete MacHale as Pete.

This production was committed to securing on and off-screen talent from the trans, non-binary and wider LGBTQ+ community. Yungblud, Yasmin Finney, Leah Choundry, director Abel Rubinstein, writer Chris Bush, and composer Alex Somers join GLAAD’s Anthony Allen Ramos for a panel conversation about the film during Trans Awareness Week.

Yungblud talks about his original inspiration behind the song he wrote. “I wrote a song because I met a young girl in Maryland who told me a story about her life. She told me a story about struggle, a story about change, a story about a generation.” After releasing the song and seeing how much it resonated with his fans, he said he knew, “This story is not over yet.” 

This is where writer Chris Bush came in. “It felt like a really significant piece to get behind and something I really couldn’t say no to.” She explains how much it would have meant to her to have seen a story like this being told “20-odd years ago.”

Finney agrees on the importance of seeing authentic trans and non-binary stories on screen. “It’s really great to be that representation for people that haven’t had the representation they need.” She goes on to say that, “Seeing yourself represented in anything on the big screen from a young age can really impact your life.”

Director, Abel Rubinstein hopes that viewers of the film take away, “a little bit of queer joy.”

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