Good for Billy Porter!
The Pose star has been working hard to diversify his future projects. From working on an Off-Broadway play to directing his first feature film! According to Deadline, Billy Porter will be directing a coming-of-age movie called What If?
What If?, which was written by Alvaro García Lecuona and made the GLAAD list before being picked up for production by Orion Pictures, follows a high school senior who posts on the Reddit forum r/relationships. The high schooler asks for advice on how to ask out his crush, a trans classmate named Kelsa. After being encouraged by the internet, the two start dating and try to “navigate a high school senior year relationship that neither could have expected.”
As for the inspiration for this story, it was an actual Reddit post from two years ago. In 2018, an anonymous 17-year-old posted that he was experiencing a similar dilemma.
“Ladies and Gentlemen of Reddit, I can’t even begin to explain how absolutely and painfully beautiful this girl is,” her wrote, “She totally makes me feel lovesick. If I were a cartoon my eyes would turn into hearts and leap from their sockets whenever I see her. She makes me feel weak in the knees…the butterflies in my belly are aggressive and many…I could write poetry about this woman.”
There is a 17yo boy on Reddit asking advice how to ask out a trans girl at school. It is absolutely heartwarming, and also he’s a really good writer? https://t.co/vPf2Ajnubn pic.twitter.com/CC3SnNssL7
— Eric Francisco (@EricFrancisco24) January 24, 2018
While we don’t know how that true story ended, we do know that the teenager received massive support and understanding from Reddit users.
Then back to the future film, Alana Mayo, President of Orion Pictures, expressed her excitement at working with Billy Porter.
She said, “We couldn’t be more excited to work with Billy Porter on his feature directing debut and are privileged that he, Alvaro, and the producing team behind this special film have entrusted us with their vision for this beautiful, contemporary love story. What If? is perfectly emblematic of the ambitions we have for the new Orion Pictures: to tell stories about the totality of the human experience.”
Billy Porter then shared in a statement, “I’m thrilled to be part of this new space in Hollywood for telling all types of stories from all types of people. I am grateful to be in a position to usher some of these stories into the mainstream and I am humbled that heavy hitters like Christine Vachon and Alana Mayo have entrusted and empowered me in this insane time we all find ourselves in.”