It took nine years but the documentary is finally available for viewing worldwide, in 240 countries.

Mark Saxenmeyer directed The Queens. Saxenmeyer is a national Emmy and Edward R. Murrow award-winning journalist, and was a television news reporter for nearly 25 years. Mark created the nonprofit journalistic production company The Reporters Inc. in 2005. You can read more about him on our Team page.

Now Streaming on Demand

Director of The Queens Tells All about the Film’s Nine-Year Journey to Worldwide Release


May 2020

When The Reporters Inc. began shooting The Queens in the spring of 2011, no one involved ever imagined it would take nine years to launch the documentary into worldwide distribution. But that’s what happened, for reasons our Executive Director Mark Saxenmeyer is now eager and ready to share in detail.

After 12 film festival appearances in five countries, three nominations for Best Documentary, and screenings at theaters, events and universities in an additional 13 American cities, The Queens received offers from six Hollywood film distribution companies. However, after careful consideration, The Reporters Inc. ultimately decided that self-distribution was the best and most efficient way to simultaneously release the film both nationally and internationally, given the increasingly fragmented and volatile film distribution industry. Bottom line: you can now stream rentals and purchases of The Queens right here on www.thereporters.org.

Part documentary classic Paris is Burning, part current FX hit drama Pose, part reality show phenom RuPaul’s Drag Race, and part traditional beauty pageant like Miss America, The Queens explores the transgender subculture (more…)

A Test of the “New Normal”

Social Distancing upon return to the golf course


April 2020

BY JERRY HUFFMAN

It’s a silly picture but one for the scrapbook. A golf pal, Darren Kittleson, and me marking a tongue-firmly-in-cheek moment—a “safe” distance apart for golfing.

Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers gave tens of thousands of Wisconsin golfers the green light to resume play on April 24, but with restrictions. Ignore the rules and the courses might easily close again.

As one of the first businesses to be reopened, golf became a litmus test to see where we are as a society in dealing with the pandemic. Follow the rules and other businesses could open. Blow it and we’re back to square one.

Oddly, for us, our foursome came separately to The Oaks Golf Course in Cottage Grove, Wisconsin—instead of carpooling. The first thing I noticed was the parking lot. Instead of everyone parking close to the clubhouse, more parked as far away as possible. Score one for social distancing.

Darren Kittleson and Jerry Huffman practice safe golfing. (Photo by Christel Boeck)

 

Instead of the usual lap through the clubhouse to check out what was on television, or to scope the new shirts in the pro shop, we were expected to stay in our car until 15 minutes before tee time. We could get something to go from the clubhouse restaurant, but the goal was to eliminate groups (more…)