Why is Hollywood Still Struggling with Homophobia?

Home // Forums // General Discussion // Why is Hollywood Still Struggling with Homophobia?

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 16 total)
Created
4 years ago
Last Reply
4 years ago
15
replies
597
views
11
users
3
2
2
  • babypook
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 4th, 2010
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451215
    Why is Hollywood Still Struggling With Homophobia?
    A new report by the Screen Actors Guild reveals that anti-LGBT prejudice is still a problem in the entertainment industry, so why is it that LGBTs still…
    read more
    Reply
    Baby Clyde
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 8th, 2010
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451217

    Presumably because the world is still struggling with homophobia.

    ReplyCopy URL
    babypook
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 4th, 2010
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451218

    I’d say the biggest detractors are the homophobes themselves. Sad that this is still a struggle.

    ReplyCopy URL
    Oscarluver30
    Participant
    Joined:
    Sep 26th, 2011
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451219

    From the Daily Beast: Why Does Hollywood Hate Gay Sex

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/01/04/why-does-hollywood-hate-gay-sex.html

    If you’ve seen any of the high-profile gay-themed movies from 2011—from Beginners to J. Edgar—you
    may have noticed they have one thing in common: the gay sex takes place
    in the dark (or not at all). Ramin Setoodeh interviews actors,
    directors, and writers to find out why gay sex is the last taboo in
    Hollywood.
         

    By now, you’ve probably heard about Shame, this generation’s Last Tango in Paris. Michael
    Fassbender plays a single (and often naked) Manhattan bachelor named
    Brandon obsessed with sex, and the movie offers a voyeuristic look into
    his anonymous encounters with various women. One afternoon he even has
    sex with a pretty blonde prostitute against the window of the Standard
    Hotel, for all of downtown New York to see.

    On another drunken night, Brandon wanders into a gay club. He’s so desperate for sex, he’ll sleep with anybody—even a man.
    The scene is meant to illustrate how depraved his character has become,
    but the moment is a turning point for another reason. For the first
    time in the film, Shame is ashamed to show you what Brandon
    experiences. In a dark underground corridor, a guy unzips Brandon’s
    pants … and the camera cuts away. The screen fades to black.

    Gay sex is the last Hollywood taboo. When Ellen DeGeneres came out of the closet
    as the first openly gay sitcom star in 1997—and her fictional self
    followed suit—a parade of gay characters came after her. There was Will & Grace, and Carrie Bradshaw’s Sex and the City sidekick, Stanford. In movies, the gay best friend became a staple, from My Best Friend’s Wedding to Mean Girls.

    Yet none of these characters do what gay men do. As Hollywood portrays it, the homosexual man is, astonishingly, sexless.

    If you can’t name any great love
    scenes between two men in hit films or TV shows in 2011, it’s because
    there weren’t any. Last summer, Justin Timberlake experienced all the benefits in Friends With Benefits, while his gay pal (played by Woody Harrelson) was sidelined. On Glee, Kurt finally lost his virginity to his boyfriend—off camera, to the frustration of many of the show’s fans. When Christopher Plummer came out of the closet in Beginners, he signaled the occasion by wearing purple (his younger boyfriend hovered in the background). Leonardo DiCaprio’s Hoover in J. Edgar had a hot male companion (Armie Hammer), but he exchanged only a single kiss with him.

    The film’s screenwriter, Dustin Lance Black, who won an Oscar for his Milk screenplay,
    says that a love scene would have been too revisionist historically. “I
    certainly didn’t want to see J. Edgar doing it,” says Black, who is
    gay. “In the 1930s, oftentimes, a loving relationship with gay men was
    never consummated.”

    Max Mutchnick, the co-creator of Will & Grace,
    remembers attending a party the night before the show’s pilot was
    filmed. Mutchnick recalls being told by (the also gay) director Joel
    Schumacher: “Whatever you do, don’t make it too butt-fucky. Don’t let
    anyone in the audience think about butt fucking and you’ll be fine.”

    Mutchnick
    continues, “The sad reality is, if you’re in a theater and they show
    gay sex, someone in the audience will shout, ‘Ewww!’”

    That’s the crux of it. Studio executives aren’t necessarily homophobic, but the film business is in a financial slump
    and averse to risks even in the best times. Though gay marriage is now
    more accepted across the United States, the industry is driven by
    tickets sold to straight men. That’s why lesbian sex gets a pass: when
    Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis spend a steamy night together in Black Swan,
    it helps sell tickets. There’s no similar financial bump attached to
    gay male intercourse. As one producer noted, anal sex is still
    considered something out of the ordinary, anyway. In The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, the anal sex scene is part of a rape between a man and woman—existing as a symbol of sexual sadism.

    As Vito Russo’s significant 1981 book The Celluloid Closet argued,
    Hollywood has always had a complicated relationship with gay men,
    keeping actors in the closet and stereotyping feminine men. For a long
    time, the Hays Code banned gay characters from even being in the movies.
    When they finally appeared, they did so with a vengeance in the
    underground queer films of the ’60s and ’70s. These movies had a lot of
    ground to make up for, which explains their pornographic tendencies.
    Andy Warhol’s 1964 short film Blowjob lived up to its title. Saturday Night at the Baths (1975) featured another early depiction of gay sex. Even in the controversial Cruising (1980),
    starring Al Pacino, gay sex was recognized as an important, defining
    part of gay male culture—the film features a graphic orgy with a fisting
    scene.

    But
    as gay people have become more integrated, depictions of gay sex lost
    their shock value. By the late ’90s, two of the factors that inspired
    rage in gay filmmakers—AIDS and Ronald Reagan refusing to help us—seemed
    more like problems of the past. The gay man was beginning to enter
    mainstream movies, especially romantic comedies, as a kind of cuddly
    figure (see Robin Williams in 1996’s The Birdcage, Kevin Kline in 1997’s In & Out, or Paul Rudd in 1998’s The Object of My Affection).

    I emailed our film critic David Ansen,
    the artistic director of the Los Angeles Film Festival, to ask whether
    there was gay sex I had overlooked in any recent movies. He wrote back:
    “There were actually movies this year with gay sex but really nobody saw
    them because they only played film festivals, like the very sexy Christopher and His Kind, which was made for Brit TV, and the still unreleased Leave It on the Floor, a musical with an all-black cast about the voguing world. Or James Franco’s experimental student film
    about Hart Crane, which has very explicit gay sex in it. The movies
    with gay sex tend to be ghettoized as gay films and not seen by
    crossover audiences.”

    When
    you ask gay screenwriters and directors to name the most explicit gay
    sex scene in a mainstream film, they often gulp in silence. Then they
    name 2005’s Brokeback Mountain. But that tent scene between Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger is still relatively tame. “I don’t think I would say Brokeback Mountain, because it’s not that explicit,” says B. Ruby Rich, the film professor at UC Santa Cruz who coined the phrase New Queer Cinema. “We’re in the post–Brokeback Mountain moment. Even a film like Gus Van Sant’s Milk
    is astonishingly chaste. The actual life of Harvey Milk was drastically
    different than that, given it was the ’70s in San Francisco and men
    were fucking in every doorway.”

    One of the standout gay films of last year was Weekend,
    a British drama that follows a young gay couple home from a one-night
    stand. It opened last fall to some of the best reviews of the year, yet
    mustered only $469,947 in limited release. Director Andrew Haigh recalls
    how difficult it was to secure financing. “Everyone was reticent about
    giving us money, because they didn’t think there would be an audience,”
    he says. “Which I thought was a bit strange. If only gay people saw the
    movie, there are still a lot of gay people out there! It’s not like
    there are only three gay people in the world.”

    He
    believes it has to do with a societal reluctance to stories about men
    falling in love. “I think there’s an idea that people have in their
    heads, if they are not gay, they are not going to get something out of a
    story of gay people,” he says. “That’s what I find frustrating. Gay
    people can see a movie with straight people and that can still resonate
    with them. It should work the other way around.”

    On television, the show that broke all boundaries for gay sex was Queer as Folk.
    The Showtime series—a remake of a British show—ran from 2000 to 2005,
    following a group of men in and out of bed, and we saw everything that
    happened under their sheets. But it was perhaps not without consequences
    for the cast. “My gay manager told me not to take the show,” says Peter
    Paige, who played Emmett. “He said, ‘We all know you’re going to have a
    big career, I just want to make sure when we pitch you to ABC, they
    don’t say we can’t put this guy on our network, we just saw him getting
    ass-fucked on Showtime.’”

    After
    the show ended, Paige says, he was often turned away in casting. He
    thinks it has more to do with playing such a flamboyant character, not
    just the sex. “My particular challenge is I played the gayest character
    on the gayest show on TV, and being openly gay, I’ve given myself a
    triple obstacle to overcome.” He’s found that sometimes even for gay
    roles, casting directors only want to see straight actors.

    For Trevor Donovan, his steamy gay kisses as the hunk Teddy on the new 90210
    was a chance to stretch. “A lot of producers and directors and studios
    are scared,” says Donovan, whose character was written off the series
    last year. “They are scared to take those chances.”

    “I
    had an incident over Thanksgiving, and it was the first time I had any
    incident outside the show that pertained to me playing a gay character,”
    says Donovan. He was nursing a beer near his hometown of Mammoth,
    Calif., when another guy at the dive bar started taunting him—asking,
    “How do you like playing a fag?”—and tapped his face. “That was the
    first time I was ever harassed or teased, and it was for playing a gay
    character,” he says. The exchange finally ended with a fight outside. “I
    threw him in the snow by the scruff of his neck.”

    Real societal change is always the product of the stories we see. In 1967, Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner
    made interracial marriage normal just months after the Supreme Court
    ruled that anti-miscegenation laws were unconstitutional. That’s why
    there’s more at stake in this gay-sex debate than just the titillation.
    If Hollywood refuses to push boundaries, to make more people comfortable
    with something that a segment of America is still uncomfortable with,
    gay people remain second-class citizens. “Here’s my thing with gay sex,”
    Dustin Lance Black says. “In terms of sex, we get plenty of that every
    day in our own lives and thrown on the Internet. I feel like what I’m
    really interested in is gay romance.” And that’s the real problem with
    no gay sex. You can’t tell a real love story if nobody is doing it. 

      

    ReplyCopy URL
    babypook
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 4th, 2010
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451220

    Terrific article!

    ReplyCopy URL
    Words Count
    Member
    Joined:
    Sep 26th, 2013
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451221

    Presumably because the world is still struggling with homophobia.

    Hollywood is responsible for its own discriminatory practices.

    ReplyCopy URL
    Riley
    Participant
    Joined:
    Oct 11th, 2010
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451222

    I love Eminem and “Rap God” is extremely impressive, but why is it homophobic?

    ReplyCopy URL
    seabel
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 21st, 2012
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451223

    The world is hetero-normative, and homosexuality is a big stone in the way. Dealing with homosexuality means dealings with millions of dollars and symbolic elements that we don’t perceive in our daily routines.

    Here’s that. 

    ReplyCopy URL
    KyleBailey
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 15th, 2013
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451224

    Oh dear god why  was this bumped up. Haven’t we had enough of this talk on the Normal Heart thread 

    ReplyCopy URL
    Tom O’Neil
    Keymaster
    Joined:
    May 13th, 2011
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451225

    Full blown, real gay sex still freaks people out because its depictions are still so new. They need to keep seeing more and more of it so that they become desensitized. Let’s hold the next Oscars ceremony in the pig room at a gay sauna or else in a fist-fucking bar. 

    ReplyCopy URL
    DS0816
    Participant
    Joined:
    Sep 15th, 2011
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451226

    Full blown, real gay sex still freaks people out
    because its depictions are still so new. They need to keep seeing more
    and more of it so that they become desensitized. Let’s hold the next Oscars ceremony in the pig room at a gay sauna or else in a fist-fucking bar. 

    Why,
    Tom O’Neil, that would indeed be former Pennsylvania U.S. Senator and
    2012 Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum’s dream come true!

    ReplyCopy URL
    Tom O’Neil
    Keymaster
    Joined:
    May 13th, 2011
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451227

    [quote=”TomONeil”]Full blown, real gay sex still freaks people out
    because its depictions are still so new. They need to keep seeing more
    and more of it so that they become desensitized. Let’s hold the next Oscars ceremony in the pig room at a gay sauna or else in a fist-fucking bar. 

    Why,
    Tom O’Neil, that would indeed be former Pennsylvania U.S. Senator and
    2012 Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum’s dream come true!

    [/quote]

    I’m sure Santorum has been in both places before — as a paying customer. Nobody becomes such a shrieking gay-basher unless they’re trying to supress their own urges. Or else he’s just pissed off that nobody wanted him at the sauna or fist-fucking bar, so he’s hellbent to make sure nobody else has any fun. That’s probably it, cum to think of it. 
     

    ReplyCopy URL
    babypook
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 4th, 2010
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451228

     to both of you.

    ReplyCopy URL
    KyleBailey
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 15th, 2013
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451229

    Well at least this thread isn’t a war like the Normal Heart thread. I wonder if the academy will embrace Blue is the Warmest Color since it is eligiable this year, right? 

    ReplyCopy URL
    Sasha
    Participant
    Joined:
    Nov 24th, 2013
    Topics:
    Posts:
    #451230
    ReplyCopy URL
Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 16 total)
Reply To: Why is Hollywood Still Struggling with Homophobia?

You can use BBCodes to format your content.
Your account can't use Advanced BBCodes, they will be stripped before saving.

Similar Topics
Atypical - Aug 16, 2017
General Discussion
Atypical - Aug 13, 2017
General Discussion