Whether you realize it or not, you’ve watched a movie that Kathy Wolfe had something to do with. The founder and CEO of Wolfe Releasing created Wolfe Video in 1985 as a mail order catalog for films marketed toward women and the LGBT community. Now, 25 years after opening up shop, Wolfe is the largest exclusive distributor of gay and lesbian films and features a library of titles including lesbian favorites Bound, But I’m a Cheerleader, Better Than Chocolate and Go Fish to more recent fare including 8: The Mormon Proposition, And Then Came Lola and Hannah Free.
AfterEllen.com caught up with Kathy Wolfe to discuss the past 25 years and what comes next.
AfterEllen.com: When you first started, did you ever expect you’d be celebrating 25 years?
Kathy Wolfe: That is sort of the big question of the day — could we ever have foreseen this? It’s probably less about foretelling the future and more about just really loving my work and sticking with it, loving who I work with and consistently feeling like we’re making a difference that keeps us driven.
AE: Is there a highlight that stands out in the past 25 years?
KW: There’s no one favorite part. We have highlights all the time.
AE: A favorite movie or one that’s been the most important in that span?
KW: It almost always happens that my favorite movie is the one we’re working on at the time, because that’s the one I’m the closest to — at the time. We’ve had many favorite movies but two movies that really stand out for me that I’m really connected to are Were the World Mine and Loving Annabelle — they’re not new films but because they speak to gay youth, we’ve had a fantastic response from youth. I’m very excited about films that really resonate with our gay youth and in terms of making a difference, I think those really are.
AE: Speaking of gay youth, when I first came out, I rented one of your films — Go Fish. I’m sure you’ve heard stories like this from others, too. Do you ever get tired of hearing those stories?
KW: I never get tired of it and we hear it all the time: People write us letters, send us thank-you notes, especially this 25th anniversary, people have been very generous and gracious with their love and comments in regards to how much it’s meant to them.
AE: What do you have in store for Wolfe Video’s next 25 years?
KW: We have all kinds of new opportunities in the digital space. We’re incredibly excited about the new opportunities coming up in that regard.