We assume that most actors are gay. Is that because of the primping and preening that goes on backstage, or the child-like aspect of assuming another character? Or is this a relatively recent phenomenon, coming in the wake of learning that such masculine icons as Cary Grant and Rock Hudson were (respectively) bi-sexual and gay? Do we now think that the more sophisticated and/or masculine an actor is, the more he’s hiding that he’s a Big ‘Mo?
I have a rather convoluted and wholly unscientific theory as to why this often happens.
Heterosexuals respond to their opposite-gender star in vastly different ways. As a sweeping generalization, men picture having sex with an actress while women fantasize having a relationship with an actor. In the real world of adulterous affairs, when a guy is caught cheating, he wishes his gal could understand it was just sex. When a gal is caught cheating, the guy gets pissed because he knows it’s about way more than sex.
The Average Jill watches Richard Gere and imagines herself on their Tibetan honeymoon. The Average Joe resents this fantasy and thus says Richard Gere is a big fag. To back up this crackpot theory, note that the story of the gerbil up Gere’s bum started around the same time he was seen, on screen, carrying Debra Winger out of the factory and into romantic iconography.
So the more straight women there are digging a certain actor, the more straight men will say and/or assume the actor’s gay. It’s a form of self-preservation.
I pretty much match the sweeping generalization, except I divide actors up into 3 categories:
AMAZING ACTOR/VERY SEXY
James Spader (pre-TV)
ENJOY HIS WORK/WANT A NASTY WEEKEND
Gael Garcia Bernal
LOYAL FAN/LET’S GO STEADY
There is one special category:
MY IDEAL HUSBAND
Oh, it all sounds so superficial silly girl party cute, and that’s the point. But that list also represents some of my very favorite actors who make movies I watch over and over again because they satisfy my soul. I’ve also carried on intricately detailed fantasy relationships with the last 4 names on that list, even while in real-world relationships with real-world men. In fact, the reason I believe the version of Matt Dillon I’ve created in my head is the ideal husband for me is because I’ve “been with him” since 1979. Every guy I’ve ever dated has lost a little mental space to Mr. Dillon. All types of boys and men come and go, but Matt has been a constant. I wish he’d get married just so I can stop pining away for him! Hell, maybe I should get married so I’d quit pining….nah.
I do need to stress the light tone surrounding all this, even when I’m serious. None of these actors need worry that I’ll show up on their doorstep. I have never - nor will I ever - go out of my way to meet any of them. The truth could very well ruin the sterling reputations that I’ve bestowed upon them. It’s all a harmless fantasy world, and from what I hear, they’re all gay.