Ric Weiland was a gifted, yet haunted man. He was extremely intelligent and his knowledge of computers led to him work at Microsoft alongside Bill Gates. Soon after, Microsoft turned into a technology empire and Weiland earned a large fortune.
As a gay man, Weiland felt called to help his community at the onset of the AIDS Crisis and became one of the top donors to LGBTQ and HIV research organizations. However, Weiland also suffered from his own inner demons. Intense depression and anxiety held him back from ever truly enjoying life. Tragically, like so many other gay men of the era, Weiland ended up being diagnosed with HIV. In 2006, he committed suicide. Some say he was never able to come to terms with his diagnosis, while others say the depression became too much to handle.
Now, a new documentary, Yes I Am – The Ric Weiland Story, seeks to set the record straight on Weiland’s complicated life and death. The film will be narrated by Zachary Quinto, who will read directly from Weiland’s own journals. Throughout the documentary, many of Weiland’s friends and colleagues will speak (including Bill Gates) about one of technology’s most important pioneers.
After his death, Weiland’s fortune was donated to over 20 nonprofits, all of which centered around LGBTQ rights, education, the environment, and human rights. His total bequeathment totaled more than $170 million dollars…one of the largest charitable gifts ever.
Finally, Ric Weiland’s oft-overlooked story will be told. The film, Yes I Am – The Ric Weiland Story is set to premiere at the Provincetown Film Festival and will screen from June 16-25, 2021. Because of COVID-19, this year’s festival will be digital, meaning that anyone, anywhere can view the films from the comfort of their own homes.
For tickets and more info, click here. The film is also set to have a digital release sometime later this year.