Coming to digital video platforms June 6, with select theatrical screenings to follow, “All Man: The International Male Story” is a documentary that examines the creation and fantastical success of the International Male catalog, a mail-order fashion shopping service aimed at gay men, metrosexuals and any other interested broad-minded men and those who identified as males of the era who wanted to add a layer of sexuality and upscale fashion to their wardrobe,

The film journeys across three decades of the catalog’s unlikely but lasting impact on fashion, masculinity, and sexuality in America, exploring the journey of an unlikely band of outsiders and how they came to design one of the most sought-after mail-order catalogs of the 1970s and ’80s, forever changing the way men –  particularly gay men – looked at themselves, each other, and how the world would view them.

So what’s the story? Enter one Gene Burkard, a formerly-closeted midwesterner and GI who found his freedom in San Diego, where he transformed men’s fashion into something cosmopolitan, carefree, and trend-setting. International Male reached gay and straight customers alike as it redefined images of masculinity in popular culture, generating revenue and circulation in the millions.

International Male creator Gene Burkard at a party with head buyer Gloria Tomita. CREDIT: Megan Toenye

The film has received high praise:

“It opened the door for a lot of men to be free,” says stylist and groomer Dale Johnson. “Who knew a little catalog company would have such a massive impact on the male identity?”

“All the things that are super groovy and acceptable, like Hedi Slimane and Prada and Balenciaga, can’t really exist without things like International Male as a point of reference,” offers author, TV personality and former Barneys, NY Creative Director Simon Doonan.

The film features Matt Bomer, Parvesh Cheena, Simon Doonan and Carson Kressley, among others, and has been recognized as official selections for The Tribeca and Outfest film festivals. 

David Aaron Moore is a former editor of Qnotes, serving in the role from 2003 to 2007. He is currently the senior content editor and a regularly contributing writer for Qnotes. Moore is a native of North...

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