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Dublin: 13 °C Thursday 23 October, 2014

“They picked the wrong drag queen”: The power of Panti’s call

New trailer from The Queen of Ireland doc shows how Rory O’Neill as Panti “spoke the truth above the heads of the political classes, straight to the people of Ireland”.

AN UPCOMING FEATURE doc about Panti Bliss – whose iconic ‘Noble Call’ oration on homophobia in Ireland grabbed international attention – is entering its final two weeks of a crowdfunding campaign.

The filmmakers have just released this new clip, which we are bringing you first on TheJournal.ie. It looks at the effect of that speech at the national theatre early this year, with Amnesty International Ireland CEO Colm O’Gorman noting: “The very fact that it was Rory as Panti who said all this was hugely important.”


The speech came in the wake of a huge controversy after RTÉ redacted comments from its online player which had been made by Panti, aka Rory O’Neill, on the Saturday Night Show. Members of the Iona Institute as well as columnist John Waters took legal issue with O’Neill’s comments about homophobia in Ireland in that interview. RTÉ paid out a total of €85,000 to the complainants in a settlement.

However, the debate the row engendered spread beyond Ireland and opened the floor to a wider discussion of prejudice against gay people, including in the Oireachtas itself and in the EU parliament in Strasbourg. The Noble Call speech made by Panti Bliss in February became a viral sensation (the speech was filmed as part of this Queen of Ireland documentary, by director Conor Horgan).

For more on the crowdfunding campaign for the doc, see here.

An earlier trailer gives a further sense of what to expect when the doc hits screens.


In your words: Being a gay teenager in Ireland>

In your words: Being a gay teacher in Ireland>

In your words: Experiencing homophobia in Ireland>

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