MIFF film I Used To Be Normal: A Boyband Fangirl Story. This documentary by Jessica Leski takes an empathetic look at four generations of female fans of US and British boybands. US teenager Elif was the main focus of the movie as she was followed across her later teenage years during her fandom of One Direction. The other three participants, Australians Susan (The Beatles) and Dara (Take That), and American Sadia (Backstreet Boys), looked back and spoke fondly about those core years of fandom and what the bands meant and still mean to them. Their honesty about their lives and fandom was a reflection of the filmmakers taking this topic seriously and really exploring things with no judgement. I absolutely loved this film and could relate my own fandom for Crowded House/Neil Finn to what they all experienced, from collecting memorabilia (everyone has a box of treasures) to making lifelong friendships with other fans and travelling around the world to see my favorite artists play.
We were fortunate to have a Q&A after the film hosted by Brodie Lancaster with the filmmakers Jessica Leski and Rita Walsh and two Australian participants Susan and Dara. They spoke about the making of the film, how they picked the participants and did a bit of an update about everyone (which I won't say because it will spoil things that happen in the film). If you have ever been part of a fandom, I highly recommend checking out this film.