Hollywood Republican Clint Eastwood and noted liberal Leonardo DiCaprio, the director and star of the upcoming J. Edgar Hoover bio-pic J. Edgar, both appear in the October issue of GQ. But when the subject of Hoover’ alleged homosexuality comes up, the two stars practically trip over themselves to downplay it.
“I’d heard all the various controversies and gossip—that he wore dresses at parties,” says Eastwood. “Everybody was saying, maybe he’s gay because he’d never gotten married. But that’s the way they did it back in the ’40s. If a guy didn’t get married, they always thought, Oh, there’s something wrong with him.”
When the magazine’s Mark Harris asks about Hoover’s relationship with Clyde Tolson—his roommate, confidante and right-arm man at the Bureau—Eastwood makes them sound like Fred and Barney (or perhaps, Bert and Ernie?).
“Well, they were inseparable pals,” says Eastwood. “Now, whether he was gay or not is gonna be for the audience to interpret. It could have been just a great love story between two guys. Or it could have been a great love story that was also a sexual story.”
Sensing Eastwood might be going off-script, DiCaprio interjects:
“What we’re saying is that he definitely had a relationship with Tolson that lasted for nearly fifty years. Neither of them married. They lived close to one another. They worked together every day. They vacationed together. And there was rumored to be more. There are definite insinuations of—well, I’m not going to get into where it goes, but…”
Not even letting DiCaprio finish his thought, Eastwood interrupts:
“It’s not a movie about two gay guys. It’s a movie about how this guy manipulated everybody around him and managed to stay on through nine presidents. I mean, I don’t give a crap if he was gay or not.”
Right, why would his being a closeted homosexual shed any light on why Hoover persecuted LGBT Americans and other people on the fringes of society for decades? It’s almost hard to believe that the script for J. Edgar, which his theaters on November 9, was written by screenwriter/activist Dustin Lance Black.
We can be glad, though, that Eastwood doesn’t care if gays and lesbians want to get married.
“I don’t give a fuck about who wants to get married to anybody else! Why not?! We’re making a big deal out of things we shouldn’t be making a deal out of … Just give everybody the chance to have the life they want.”
Sounds like somebody needs a nap.
Images via GQ, Warner Bros