The new horror film Summoning Sylvia centers around a gay bachelor party that goes awry after a seance is performed to make contact with the spirits that are rumored to haunt the house the group is renting.

Frankie Grande spoke with uInterview founder Erik Meers in an exclusive interview about his role in the film.

“We’re just a bunch of gay guys in a house,” Grande said of the plot. “There’s no agenda, and the stories are not about our coming of age, coming out or dealing with external societal pressures. It is not a trauma story about gay people, which is what we usually see. It has universal themes that apply to everybody.”

He emphasized that the film is an example of “how inclusivity does not exclude the audience, it just includes more people.”

“I think a lot of studios and a lot of network executives are still terrified of including LGBTQ+ characters because they feel like it could lead to excluding some of their core audience members,” added Grande, who is the brother of pop star Ariana Grande. “I think the opposite is true. I think the more inclusive your films get, the more they will reach a broad audience.”

He noted that he’s seen a lot of straight men in the audience “laughing just as hard” as gay men.

“The themes and the messages are about friendship,” he continued. “Gender doesn’t matter, sexual identity doesn’t matter, you can relate to the relationships that are happening in this film.”

Grande shared his favorite moment shooting the film: “I think the resolution of the film being drag number is extremely timely but also really fun… I’m not a professional drag queen, but man, I wish I was.”

His favorite behind-the-scenes moment was trying to teach Travis Coles, who plays the lead character Larry, the four-part harmony for the acapella rendition of “All Star.” He explained, “The three of us – me, Noah [Ricketts] and Troy [Iwata] – are all Broadway-trained actors… and Travis is not. He was so overwhelmed, and it was so funny.”

Grande said the audience to leave the theater “with a big smile on their face” and realize that a film “directed, written, acted and produced by LGBTQ+ people” could speak to them.

Summoning Sylvia is available to stream on-demand now.

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