Billy Porter to Direct 'Camp' Film Version

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Wednesday October 27, 2021

Billy Porter
Billy Porter  (Source:Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP,)

Billy Porter has signed on to direct the movie version of Lev Rosen's YA novel "Camp," about first love at a summer camp for LGBTQ+ teens, Deadline reported in an exclusive.

The story tackles issues of first love and identity, Deadline summarizing that the "film follows 16-year-old Randy Kapplehoff, who loves spending the summer at Camp Outland, a camp for queer teens."

"It's where he met his best friends," the synopsis continues. "It's where he takes to the stage in the big musical. And it's where he fell for Hudson Aaronson-Lim — who's only into straight-acting guys and barely knows not-at-all-straight-acting Randy even exists."

Randy's soon faced with a dilemma not unlike that of the closet: Trying to mold himself into someone he isn't for reasons that might not really be worth forsaking authenticity.

The novel was published last year in both the UK and the United States. "It was Barnes & Noble's YA pick for Pride Month," Deadline recalled.

"Billy Porter, who I've been fortunate to know for more than 20 years, is the perfect director for this story, which is both hilariously funny and also quite moving," producer Dan Jinks said of the project.

"I wish a movie like this was around when I was growing up," Jinks added. "I'm thrilled we get to make it now."

"In addition to directing, Porter also will play the role of Mark, the camp's theater director," Deadline noted.

It's the second feature film directorial project for Porter, who, as previously reported at EDGE, has also signed on to direct a film for Amazon.

"Tentatively titled 'To Be Real,' the movie will follow three queer friends who escape their hometown for Pride Weekend in New York City," EDGE reported in August. "The film was reportedly pitched as an LGBTQ+ 'Superbad' crossed with 'Booksmart.'"

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.