With 2014's arrival, there's a lot for LGBT audiences to look forward to in the coming 12 months. Here, in no particular order, are a few of the upcoming projects and releases to keep an eye out for.
Ira Sachs' partially autobiographical last film, Keep the Lights On, examined a gay relationship from its young inception through its eventual dissolution due to one partner's struggle with addiction, premiered to critical acclaim at the Sundance Film Festival in 2012. This January, Sachs' returns to Sundance with his latest film, which looks at a gay relationship at the other end of its lifespan. Love is Strange stars Alfred Molina and John Lithgow as a couple in New York exploring what happens when one loses his job as a result of their getting married after 39 years together. The film costars Cheyenne Jackson and Marisa Tomei.
It's been more than eight years since the Showtime series Queer as Folk went off the air, which was TV's last dramatic series to focus on (though not exclusively) the lives of a group of gay men. That show became a cultural phenomenon and ran for five seasons, so it's no surprise that HBO is hoping to find similar success with Looking, a new comedic drama series premiering in January that follows several gay male friends in San Francisco. Looking stars out actor Jonathan Groff as Patrick, a tech designer looking for love and career success alongside his friends Agustin and Dom. The show will run next to the third season of the buzzy comedy Girls, and also brings with it a fresh, indie sensibility courtesy of creator Michael Lannan and writer/director Andrew Haigh (Weekend). Check out the trailer below.
The Disney Channel is set to premiere its first LGBT-inclusive TV episode next year, on the comedy Good Luck Charlie. The episode will feature the Duncan family setting up a playdate for their daughter with a school friend, who happens to have two moms. Sister network ABC Family has been highly inclusive for years, but this is the first time one of Disney's original series (aimed at a younger audience) have included any openly LGBT characters. It's an important step for the Disney Channel to take, and for LGBT representation on the whole.
Bioware and Electronic Arts have made many of the most LGBT inclusive games to ever hit shelves, including their blockbuster Mass Effect and Dragon Age series. The next game in the latter series, Dragon Age: Inquisition, is set for release in the fall of 2014, and head writer David Gaider has confirmed that the development team is producing a new immersive take on romantic interactions in the game, not to mention more "mature and tasteful" sex scenes. Both Dragon Age and Mass Effect have only grown more inclusive with each successive installment, and even began adding dialogue and storylines unique to same-sex romances, so players looking to play their avatars as something other than straight have much to be excited for.
USA will premiere new half-hour comedy Sirens this March about three of Chicago's best EMTs, including out Hank (Kevin Daniels), whose sometimes silly and self-destructive ways often ruin their friendships and relationships. The series, adapted from the British show of the same name, is written by Denis Leary (Rescue Me) and Bob Fisher (Wedding Crashers). Check out the trailer below.
Frank Ocean posted on his official Tumblr that fans can look forward to new music in summer 2014. His debut album Channel Orange, which featured the hit song "Thinkin' Bout You" about his previous relationship with a man, won Album of the Year at the 55th Grammy Awards. Uh Huh Her also announced an anticipated March 2014 release date for their third album with hopes of a national tour during summer 2014.
The CW has picked up the LGBT-inclusive Canadian comedy Seed to air later this season. The series tells the story of Harry, a slacker bartender who works as a sperm donor for extra cash. Harry reluctantly strikes up relationships with three recipient families, including interracial lesbian couple Zoey and Michelle (Stephanie Mills and Amanda Brugel respectively) and their son Billy.
Against Me!'s new album Transgender Dysphoria Blues hits stores on January 21, and will be the first album the band has recorded and released since lead singer Laura Jane Grace announced she was transitioning in 2012. The band's first single "F***MYLIFE666" is already available, which you can listen to below.
HBO's original movie adaptation of the Tony-winning Larry Kramer play The Normal Heart is slated for a 2014 premiere. The much anticipated film from director Ryan Murphy stars Mark Ruffalo, Matt Bomer, Jim Parsons, Taylor Kitsch, Jonathan Groff and Joe Mantello, and tells the story of the onset of the HIV/AIDS crisis in New York City in the early 1980s.
(Editor's note: This post was originally published by SDGLN content partner GLAAD.)