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Need To Know: Jamal Lewis Is Challenging Gender Norms With No Fats, No Fems Documentary

Need To Know: Jamal Lewis Is Challenging Gender Norms With No Fats, No Fems Documentary

Jamal Lewis no fem no fats

Meet the documentarian who's fighting the open discrimination against non-cis people in gay culture.

In 2015, trans activist and media personality Tiq Milan invited invited 12 young people with diverse gender identities on MTV for It's Our Prom: A Night to De-Gender, a special program where each guest had to imagine fantasy looks they'd create for their ideal prom night.

One of them, Jamal Lewis, who identifies as "gender deviant," is now producing his own documentary, No Fats, No Fems, which received most of its funding through an Indigogo campaign.

Jamal Lewis

Lewis launched this project to open minds and prove there's power in being fat and effeminate. "For me, I'm just interested in the spaces that people are afraid to occupy," Lewis, who uses "he-she" as a gender pronoun, told the L.A. Times. "I think there is something to be learned from what we are most afraid of, and so, if that's what I was taught to be afraid of, well [forget] that. I am the Fat Femme."

With 550 backers and $17,000 raised, Lewis wants to fight open discrimination that exists on social media and in the dating scene.

The documentary received support from the dating app Jack'd and at the Tribeca Film Festival. Now, Lewis is traveling across the country to promote the film and speak on body and femme positivity.

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Last year, Lewis told Out:

"I want to tell kids that you are the life of the party! Always remember that. There is no party without you! If your school decides to fashion prom in ways that exclude you or any of your friends, start your own prom where you'll have the freedom to build a space that is centered around your needs and desires."

Read the full interview at

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