J.C. Leyendecker was one of the most prominent artists of his time, but his story is largely forgotten. Forced to keep his sexuality a secret, his coded imagery spoke directly to the gay community and laid the foundation for LGBTQ representation in advertising today.

Featuring Neil Patrick Harris as J.C. Leyendecker

Coded tells the story of legendary illustrator J.C. Leyendecker, a gay man whose early-20th century advertisements were coded with LGBTQ imagery that quietly acknowledged a community that was forced to live in the closet. The documentary explores Leyendecker’s legacy as a grandfather of modern advertising, connecting how today’s LGBTQ advertisements are built upon a foundation laid by his work.


Thursday, June 17 – 8:00 PM
Hudson Yards Public Square and Gardens

Friday, June 18 – 6:00 PM
Tribeca At Home


An Imagine Documentaries & Delirio Films Production
In Association with Tripod Media
In Partnership with P&G Studios

Directed by: Ryan White
Produced by: Christopher Leggett, Rafael Marmor, Conor Fetting-Smith, Jessica Hargrave, Marc Gilbar
Executive Producers: Sara Bernstein, Justin Wilkes, Kimberly Doebereiner, Brent Miller, Marc Pritchard, Zoë Morrison
Directors of Photography: Ronan Killeen, David Paul Jacobson
Animation Director: Danny Madden
Music by: Blake Neely
Edited by: Rejh Cabrera
Featuring Neil Patrick Harris as J.C. Leyendecker
Featuring: Jari Jones, Judy Goffman Cutler, Jennifer A. Greenhill, John T. Nash