By Christina Ferraz
Q: There are people in the film that are from Philadelphia. Are you a native of Philly as well?
A.: “I’m not a native; I’ve been here six years. I moved here in 2006 from Atlanta and I grew up in Greenville, South Carolina. I’m a Southerner, born and raised.”
Q: Do you consider this home?
A: “Yes, I do. This is my adult, my decided home. This is a real decision to be in a certain kind of place and to call it home.”
Q: Tell me about the inspiration behind this movie. Where did that come from?
A: “It’s very much linked to a personal experience I had. Some elements of what’s in the film is very much my experience, but there’s other elements that are really based off of experiences that I’ve had with different people and different gay designated areas of cities that I’ve lived in and traveled to.”
Q: Were these the basis of your characters?
A: “In these spaces, what I always found consistent were these individuals that no matter what time of day, what time of year you went to these areas – you would always see them. It was interesting me; they were primarily older men, that became representatives of that area and could tell you the history of that area at the drop of a dime or engage you in a funny, intimate friend way. What I realized is that there was a range of backgrounds of who these people really were, ranging from sex workers, to those who were homeless, to those with HIV/AIDS. These were the conversations that I was having, so, I wanted to start by creating a character who is a representation of those men with a certain kind of dignity, but, have been through a lot but are still very caring. Jimmy is a representation of that.”