Love, Simon, the film about 17-year-old Simon Spier, a high school student who hasn’t come out yet and doesn’t know the identity of the anonymous classmate he’s fallen for, is receiving rave reviews and a 91% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Even cooler? Love, Simon’s director Greg Berlanti and his husband, pro soccer player Robbie Rogers, are buying out screenings of the film for young queer kids.

The free screenings will take place in theaters in Mississippi and Kentucky and will allow for hundreds of young people to see the film. Love, Simon will be widely released on April 6.

In a statement, Rogers said, “Greg and I have been so moved by everyone reaching out about #LoveSimon, especially young LGBTQ people and allies who have personally connected to the story. We have been equally moved by people buying out theatres to make sure this film reaches as many young people as possible and to that end we are working with various LGBTQ organizations to buy out theatres in Jackson, MS and Louisville, KY for young LGBT kids who could normally not afford to buy a ticket.”

Actor Matt Bomer has followed suit, saying via Instagram on Thursday night that he was so moved by the coming-of-age film, he was buying tickets for a whole AMC theater audience in his hometown of Spring, Texas. “Please come see @lovesimonmovie in my hometown of Spring, TX for free!” Bomer wrote on Instagram. ”…This is an important movie, and a really good one. I know you’ll love it so come watch for free this Sunday!”

Love, Simon is the first gay teen romantic comedy to be produced by a major studio. As some reviewers have noted, it may have the too-slick, glossy look that rom coms and teen flicks tend to have, but that is exactly the point. It’s another coming-of-age love story, regardless of gender.

As the Los Angeles Times wrote,”…if this adaptation of Becky Albertalli’s young-adult novel Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda feels a long way from the raw intensity of an LGBTQ-themed art-house drama like Call Me by Your Name or Blue Is the Warmest Color, it nonetheless accomplishes its own, not-insignificant form of progress. There may be little in this movie that you haven’t seen before, but the perspective through which you’re seeing it can make all the difference.”

 

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