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Mayor Pete - What We Know So Far

How does a man with little government experience rise in the ranks to become a major presidential candidate? The new documentary "Mayor Pete” explores the historic campaign of Pete Buttigieg, former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, to hold the highest office in the United States. It follows the earliest days of his run through the eventual concession in March of 2020. "Mayor Pete" also captures the politician's personal life as he navigates becoming one of the most prominent LGBTQ+ figures in American politics.

The project comes from a director experienced with making riveting documentaries, having previously worked on the acclaimed "Boys State" and "The Family." Filmmaker Jesse Moss found inspiration in the story of this unlikely presidential candidate and his meteoric rise on the national stage. "One of the reasons I wanted to make the film is there seemed to be something almost Frank Capra-esque about this notion that a small-town mayor could run for president and be competitive," Moss said during a Deadline interview.

When does Mayor Pete premiere?

Amazon Studios is handling the global release of "Mayor Pete," which will be released on Prime Video on November 12, 2021. The high-profile project represents another foray into documentary filmmaking for the studio, which has mainly focused on producing original TV series like "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel" and blockbuster films like "The Tomorrow War" and "Coming to America 2" in recent years.

"Mayor Pete” made its debut at the 2021 Chicago International Film Festival. After the premiere, the film's schedule included showings at the Heartland International Film Festival, the Philadelphia International Film Festival, and the Virginia Film Festival. Notable among its early appearances was a showing during NewFest (via NBCNews). The festival, also known as the New York Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, & Transgender Film Festival, gave the project its coveted opening-night slot. It highlights the importance of the subject of representation in politics for the LGBTQ+ community.

Who is the cast of Mayor Pete?

The documentary's central figure is, of course, Pete Buttigieg. The United States Navy Reserve lieutenant served for a period in Afghanistan before becoming South Bend, Indiana's mayor (via Washington Post). While in office, in 2015, he came out gay in a column in the South Bend Tribune, becoming Indiana's first openly gay elected official. He went on to marry his husband, Chasten, in 2018. 

Buttigieg's spouse also appears in the project. His presence in the film offers an in-depth look at the man many know only through his relationship with the politician. During the 2020 campaign, Chasten also acted as an advisor to Buttigieg. His time as a teacher proved to be a valuable asset as the candidate tackled issues such as teacher pay and educational resources.

The campaign team makes their presence known throughout the documentary. Variety took note of communications director Lis Smith's straightforward approach. In a review of "Mayor Pete," the outlet described her as "...a straight-shooting political animal who never minces words when pointing out Buttigieg's campaign weak spots."

What is Mayor Pete about?

"Mayor Pete" documents Pete Buttigieg's historic run for President. As the mayor of South Bend at the time, Buttigieg had become somewhat known on a national stage before the 2020 election cycle began. Starting out, the documentary shows the earliest days of campaigning — complete with a small team supporting the candidate. The film continues through the campaign's entire run and subsequent suspension by Buttigieg. Every conversation captured between the candidate and his team provides what Indiewire describes as a "fly-on-the-wall look" at what it really means to be a major political figure.

The film also shines a light on Buttigieg's private life. Having become a major LGBTQ+ figure in the political world, "Mayor Pete" offers a sincere look at how that influences his private life. As with any campaign, family and friends find themselves thrust into the spotlight. The candidate's spouse, Chasten, offers support in all aspects of campaigning — seen both in front of crowds and at work behind the scenes.

Buttigieg is currently the United States secretary of transportation for the Biden administration. The Buttigiegs recently welcomed two fraternal twins on September 4, 2021 (via The New York Times).