This from a man who can't be trusted to care for his own face!
Plastic disaster Rupert Everett is mouthing off against gay people again. That's exactly what it is when someone says that there's "nothing worse" that a child being raised by two dads. Really? Nothing? Not even being left in an institution with no parents? He thinks children need a father and a mother. Well, he had that, and his own mother wishes he weren't gay—perhaps at the root of his self-loathing—so we can see having both does not always a well-rounded and sensitive human being make. (Does his mom wish he weren't a former prostitute, too? Or is it just the current homo part that bugs her?)
Saying that kids need a mother and a father is bullshit. Plenty of children have only one or the other, or have two moms or two dads, and turn out absolutely fine. Plenty have the so-called ideal of a mom and dad and grow up to be emotionally stunted or otherwise damaged. To single out gay parents is anti-gay. For it to come from a gay person is infuriating. Just like that awful D&G brat, it seems to be a self-defeating opinion that, where it exists, is far more prevalent among well-to-do gays who feel superior to other gay people (he disavows any notion that he is a part of a gay community) and therefore judge them harshly. They're hung up about not fitting in so have a chip on their shoulders against other gay people instead of simply enjoying not fitting in and being their own people.
Yesterday, I was invited to the press day for A Single Man (official site) Tom Ford's singularly satisfying adaptation of the classic Christopher Isherwood novel about a man reacting to the sudden loss of his lover, set in L.A. in 1962. I arrived, got my notes in the hospitality suite at the Ritz Carlton on Central Park South and wound up with a front-row seat downstairs. Held in a room off the bar, passing tourists could peek in through the windows to see actors Nicholas Hoult (he of About a Boy fame), Colin Firth and Julianne Moore as well as the director fielding a strange mish-mosh of questions from the assembled media.
L TO R, TOP TO BOTTOM: Colin Firth on the gay aspect of the film, Firth on the relevance of showing a happy gay couple in a movie, Nicholas Hoult on if Kenny is gay, Hoult on the significance of gay identity in the film.
I was sandwiched between an interesting older woman (Ford was, at one point, called a "gay man of a certain age" to his face) from HuffingtonPost who was using an antique tape recorder and a younger Polish woman with serious film questions who'd snatched so many of the free cookies that she almost had to offer me one when I happened to glance at her stash.
Ford and Firth, sharp-dressed men (of a certain age)
Questions ranged from the banal ("Julianne, have you picked up any fun makeup tips while making movies over the years?") to the strangulated (a strange request of Firth to connect his character to Harvey Milk since the films are set in basically the same era—which they aren't), but one thing that stood out for me was how reluctant the men were to concede that this is a uniquely gay story, albeit one readily absorbable by a non-gay audience. Instead, it was repeated a few times that George is gay but the story could be about a straight man...and this just is not true.
L TO R, TOP TO BOTTOM: Tom Ford on Gore Vidal, his Oscar buzz and his film's gay role models, Ford on Rupert Everett's advice to actors to stay closeted, Ford on his seriousness about directing, Julianne Moore on the unique relationship between gay men and their female friends.
I do think much of this comes from a marketing directive. However, the fact that such a marketing consideration exists proves that "gay" really does still matter, something the decidedly liberal and enlightened principals seemed to want to disbelieve. The main disconnect is those who don't want this to be a gay film seem to define that as a film in which the character or characters are struggling with being gay. For me, a film can be gay (and also potentially universal) even if—or perhaps especially if—the characters are content with their sexualities.
I don't overly fault them for their opinions, or even the studio for attempting to de-gay the film in its marketing because what matters most is the fact that the film itself is unflinching, a masterpiece really. But I still find it endlessly fascinating that a movie with a strong theme about the invisibility of its gay characters is making its own gayness invisible as a means of getting by in an unaccepting world—47 years after the supposedly ancient time in which it's set.
I asked Ford about the invisibility theme. He seemed to like my question (after initially politely asking someone near me to not take his picture while he was talking):
Nicholas Hoult was gorgeous and fresh and articulate beyond his years, Colin Firth was handsome and dry-witted and had such a commanding presence, Tom Ford was charmingly gregarious and bore no resemblance to the menacingly macho images we've been force-fed and Julianne Moore was ravishingly beautiful and hilarious—she really seems to not sweat the small stuff, which made a stern request that we not photograph her and a sudden softening of the lights seem silly and unnecessary.
Be sure to see A Single Man when it opens. Here is my original review. Tons more video and transcriptions of all the best quotes after the jump, including Firth on whether Ford called him fat and Ford being asked if Jon Hamm makes a voice cameo in the film...
As I've been Tweeting and Facebooking, I saw three straight plays in 24 hours. Incredibly, they happened to conjure up, sequentially, the '40s (Blithe Spirit), '50s (The Temperamentals) and '60s (Barefoot in the Park):
The cast of Blithe Spirit brings Coward's humor back from the dead.
On Friday, I had house seats for Blithe Spirit with Rupert Everett and Angela Lansbury which I'd gotten for myself, my partner and my mom. When my mom got sick and postponed her visit again, I asked my friend Jared of JustJared.
The play is a frothy comedy by Noel Coward about high-society gentleman Charles Condomine (Rupert Everett) and his equally hoity-toity wife Ruth (Jayne Atkinson), who stage a seance with a self-important medium named Madame Arcati (Angela Lansbury) so that Charles can get ideas for a novel he's planning on a con-artist clairvoyant. Unfortunately, the seance goes so well that the ghost of Condomine's sexy first wife Elvira (Christine Ebersole) is summoned. Making matters worse, only he can see her.
This kind of comedy needs to be light to be right, and it was, for the most part, effortless and enjoyable. Everett does have that strangely plastic look, even from the stage, but otherwise is perfectly cast as a lovable snob whose skepticism in all things paranormal dissolves hilariously before our eyes. Atkinson was actually one of the highlights for me, the anchor of all the proceedings. I was not so taken with the Ebersole, so indelible in Grey Gardens, who looked quite pretty as Elvira but whose accent came and went along with her effectiveness in this particular role. Susan Louise O'Connor in the small but pivotal part of double-time domestic Edith was delightful.
But as her latest Tony Award indicated, the show belongs to Angela Lansbury. I'd last seen her on Broadway in the excruciating Deuce, so it was a real treat to see her in something so good and performing so well. She threw so much energy into Madame Arcati that to the uninformed it would be impossible to conjure up any guesses as to her real age (83). She dances about the stage as she attempts to raise the dead and cracks up the audience with ease as she dominates the seance, picking on hapless dinner guest Mrs. Bradman (Deborah Rush).
The play ends with a ghostly projection of the late Noel Coward.
It was easy to imagine why this type of witty drawing-room comedy might have enchanted London during the war, all the more reason its ability to elicit laughter would remain strong to this day.
If all of this sounds appealing, my condolences—the successfulproduction went to the great Shubert in the sky last night.
The Temperamentals, set in the early '50s, is an excellent play written by Jon Marans and directed by Jonathan Silverstein about the origins of the Mattachine Society, one of the world's oldest gay-rights organizations.
Rupert Everett has very obvious plastic surgery—this much is a fact. But while Star correctly pointed this out, they appear to have cheated a little or a lot.Rupert went on Martha Stewart's show(where the "new face" was revealed), and it appears to my eye that Star used a screen grab from the show or possibly a still from an agency, and they PhotoShopped it a lot, giving his already challenged face a downright ghastly look.
Screengrabs above reveal he really does look terrible sometimes, but not so bad at other times.
His cheeks (just like his Next Best Thing co-star) are really the worst part, but they're not bad until he smiles or until a still camera fixes on them.
One of the fun things about business for me is trying to figure out what in the hell will sell, and why. I enjoy the psychology of capitalism. (The money ain't bad, either.)
I feel the same toward blogging—once you get hits, you begin to try to figure out how to get more. Broadly, it's easy enough to realize that men who forget to put on clothes rack up hits, unique information about half-century-old icons racks up hits and personal ruminations do not. In a way, the need for hits is as poisoning as the quest for the almighty dollar—they each drive us to do things we might not choose to do otherwise.
Rupert, looking set to star in My Best Friend's WELDING.
Rupert Everett gives a characteristically infuriating—but never boring—interview to the Daily Beast (via Towleroad), in which he rails against gay men having babies with surrogates:
"I think this surrogacy thing is crap. It is utterly hideous. I think it's egocentric and vain. And these endless IVF treatments people go through. I mean, if you are meant to have babies then great. But this whole idea of two gay guys filling a cocktail shaker with their sperm and impregnating some grim lesbian and then it gets cut out is just really weird. If I did have the impulse to be a parent, I would adopt—or foster. But this whole thing of forcing parenthood on us gay men is so bogus."