Film on homophobia in women’s basketball program at Penn State to screen April 4 at Philadelphia Film Festival

(PHILADELPHIA, PA) March 30, 2009. On the eve of the FINAL FOUR, The Philadelphia Film Festival / CineFest 09 announces the world premier of the film “Training Rules,” on Saturday, April 4 at 7 p.m. at the Ritz East Theater.

“Training Rules” chronicles a lawsuit filed in 2006 by student athlete Jennifer Harris against Penn State University and women’s basketball head coach Rene Portland. During her 27 years of coaching, Portland enforced three strict rules: no drinking, no drugs and no lesbians. The documentary examines how a wealthy athletic department, enabled by the silence of a complacent university, allowed talented athletes, thought to be gay, to be dismissed from their college team.

Academy Award nominated filmmaker Dee Mosbacher was already involved in directing a project about homophobia in sports when she heard about the case.

“Sensing that this lawsuit would be groundbreaking and might precipitate a much-needed change in women’s sports, I decided to switch gears and make a character driven, social issue documentary viewed through the lens of the lawsuit,” Mosbacher said.

Mosbacher enlisted colleague Fawn Yacker, cinematographer on two Academy Award winning documentaries to co-produce and co-direct. Together the duo detail the stories of athletes whose young lives were tragically derailed when Penn State turned a blind eye to discrimination based on sexual orientation. Harris’s case has inspired athletes and women across the country and has changed the course of women’s sports. Plaintiff Jennifer Harris and filmmakers Dee Mosbacher and Fawn Yacker will be attending the screening of Training Rules, as will several of the film’s key characters.

For additional information, a screener DVD, or for interview requests, contact Dee Mosbacher at or call 415-307-2268.

For full press kit, go to

Philadelphia Film Festival/CineFest 09 is the premier festival of international films in the Delaware Valley. Mounted and curated by a team of local and experienced festival producers and cinephiles, including Ray Murray, Carol Coombes, Thom Cardwell, Jennifer Steinberg, Scott Johnston, Claire Brown Kohler, Eric Moore and Lewis Tice.

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