Documentary Featuring Defunct Crown Heights Gay Bar Premieres Today


Revered by many as Brooklyn’s oldest gay bar, the now defunct Starlite Lounge in Crown Heights is the subject of a documentary that will premiere at the NewFest film festival on Friday.

During the ’70s, the outpost on the corner of Bergen Street and Nostrand Avenue created a junction for the local African American LGBT community.

DNAinfo reports that director Kate Kunath and co-director, Sasha Wortzel, started filming “We Came To Sweat” in 2010, at the height of Starlite’s landlord troubles; their proprietor sold the building without informing the owners, and served them eviction papers shortly after. The film took four years to complete, and chronicles the taproom’s history from its opening in 1962 to its fold in 2010.

Kunath told DNAinfo: “Losing places like this has an impact on the quality of all of our lives, and I think that the gentrification piece is something that people will really have to think about. The film doesn’t have experts that talk about gentrification. It’s very much a story told by people.”

Preach! Watch the trailer below, and get tickets here for the 4:30 p.m. showing at the Walter Reade Theater at 165 W. 65th Street.

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