Arts and Entertainment

‘For my Wife’ returns to Vashon

Two years after the release of “For My Wife,” the award-winning documentary by two local filmmakers will return to the Vashon Theatre to kick off its DVD release tour.

The groundbreaking film, which was written and directed by Islander David Rothmiller and produced by his partner LD Thompson, chronicles Seattle woman Charlene Strong’s campaign for marriage equality after a hospital denied her access to her dying partner’s bedside in 2006 because the two were not legally married.

In 2007, Strong’s compelling testimony before the state Senate helped pass a bill that created a statewide domestic partnership registry. The documentary has since been re-edited three times to incorporate Strong’s ongoing efforts to see that no one has to endure the discrimination she felt.

In 2009, Rothmiller said, Strong became the face of Washington’s Referendum 71, which extended the rights of gay and lesbian couples in the state, and she was appointed by Gov. Chris Gregoire to the Washington State Human Rights Commission.

“Her work and the film together have created a platform for her as a national spokesman,” Rothmiller said.

“For My Wife” has now earned six national and international film awards, including best documentary at the 2008 Seattle Lesbian and Gay Film Festival.

Thompson said that touring the world with Strong and the film has been “fulfilling, exhilarating and extremely educational.”

Rothmiller agreed, saying the process has brought out the activists in both of them. “Our responsibility as independent filmmakers is to bring what we see as important issues to the people. ... The voice of the independent filmmakers is the last voice of free media,” he said.

“For My Wife” will be shown at the Vashon Theatre at 8:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 27. Tickets are $10 at the door; proceeds will benefit Equal Rights Washington. The DVD will also be for sale at the event. An party will follow at The Hardware Store Restaurant.

Charlene Strong, David Rothmiller and LD Thompson as well as state Sen. Joe McDermott will attend.

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