As you know, actor Anne Heche tragically passed on August 12 after a fiery car accident left her burned and eventually in a coma. In 1997, Anne and Ellen DeGeneres’ high-profile coupledom made big waves, though their relationship ended messily in 2000 and Anne went on to marry a man, Coleman Laffoon, in 2001. Well, just this May, here on Queerty, I wrote about Anne’s last soulmate, the openly lesbian Ami Goodheart. Anne and Ami were playing things semi-cool, though their Instagram videos made it clear to many (including myself) that they had fallen into a love/Heche relationship.
In the midst of Anne’s crisis, Ami was in shock and suffering privately, choosing to keep her silence and stay away from the judgy press. But the day Anne died, Ami reached out to me and messaged that she wanted to tell me the story of their bond because she trusted me as part of her old NYC family. She hasn’t yet felt up to doing that–I’ll keep you posted–but the next day, Ami did post something on Instagram: “Anne was there for me in the toughest times…and told me every day how much she loved me, but more importantly, she showed me. We would joke when people would ask “Are you two a couple?” We would answer with, “Yeah, we’re a couple. A-coupla weirdos!”…I love you so much, my dear, sweet Anne….I am a better person today because of your pure love.” By the way, Ami has started a YouTube interview show called In The Closet.
Drag star dissed
View this post on Instagram
Keeping with the “distrust of the media” theme: With all those Emmy awards and viewers, you’d think RuPaul’s Drag Race would be well known to every last person on the planet, right? Well, not to a couple of TV judges. This month, “Mama June” Shannon — a/k/a Honey Boo Boo’s mother — sued singer/producer Adam Barta for $5,000 on A&E’s Court Night Live. (This was clearly the trial of the century for those who eat beef jerky for breakfast.) When the illustrious Boo Boo Sr. griped that Barta didn’t pay her for executive producer work on a show called The Dish, Barta defended himself by saying that everyone got paid the same, including costar Tammie Brown (Drag Race, season one and All Stars, season one), who’s just as famous as June.
Alas, Judge Greg Mathis and Judge Vonda Evans hadn’t heard of poor Tammie and wondered just how famous she really is. Bristles Barta, “Perhaps Judge Evans better familiarize herself with Drag Race if she wishes to remain in reality TV.” And Tammie tells me: “Well, at least now they know who I am…Tammie Brown with an ‘ie’, not a ‘y’ like Tammy Wynette.” These straight judges probably never even heard of Liza with a z!
Meanwhile, some grammar has been upgraded over at Kinky Boots. The smash musical about the leggy crossdresser named Lola is back, but this time it’s Off-Broadway and with a script change. As an observer who posts on the All That Chat board noted, Lola’s line to the audience, “Ladies, gentlemen and those who have yet to make up their mind” has been tweaked to now include “they, them and you.” Good for them.
All I want for Christmas is a trademark
Speaking of rewrites: Is high-pitched diva Mariah Carey revising history? It came out this summer that Mariah has tried to trademark the phrase “the queen of Christmas,” but that didn’t sit too well with singer Elizabeth Chan (who already calls herself by that name) and the legendary Darlene Love, who trilled some of the 1960s brightest hits, including “He’s A Rebel” and, of course, “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)”. Anyone who remembers Late Night With David Letterman will recall the host bringing Darlene out to belt that song year after year for some instant holiday cheer.
Well, you’ve no doubt heard that Darlene has been grabbing this reindeer by the horns. On Facebook, she posted: “Is it true that Mariah trademarked Queen of Christmas? What does that mean, that I can’t use that title? David Letterman officially declared me the Queen of Christmas 29 years ago, a year before she released ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You’ and at 81 years of age, I’m NOT changing anything. I’ve been in the business for 52 years, have earned it and can still hit those notes! If Mariah has a problem, call David Letterman or my lawyer!”
I requested a follow-up comment from Darlene and got this: “I adore Mariah Carey as an artist and songwriter, but to register the term ‘Queen of Christmas’ as a trademark for her sole usage with exclusive merchandising rights to capitalize on products, including music, fragrances and alcohol, doesn’t reflect on the holiday spirit of love and gratitude. ‘Queen of Christmas’ should not be exclusive to anyone except for Mary, mother of Jesus!” And she doesn’t have a new CD coming out, so I say let’s give the title to Darlene.
Over the Hill?
Unlike Darlene, Oscar-nominated actor Jonah Hill — also known as Beanie Feldstein’s brother —wants to make big changes in his public persona. Hill recently announced that he won’t promote his new projects because his past media appearances have led to anxiety attacks and he’d rather pull back and work on his mental health. Bravo! A long-running press person I know thinks that’s a good idea since the promotions were obviously wearing Jonah down.
Says the reporter, “I was banned from covering Sony stuff for six years because I dared to ask him a pretty innocuous question and he went ballistic during the interview. Later that day, a big TV host walked out on an interview with Jonah and said he would never talk to him again.” Here’s hoping that Jonah’s distancing himself from the press proves healing for all.
Blind item bonus: Which Broadway star is apparently as wack as the character she won a Tony for playing? Spies tell me she is a flat earther! Speechless here.
Another one: That top gay designer puts cool people in his ad campaigns, but guess how much the most recently shot one paid its subjects? Five hundred bucks! That barely paid for the Uber to the studio. And yet, I’m waiting for the call.
And one more: Which Marilyn Monroe lookalike wanted her gym to close the place to everyone but herself when she goes there, but they replied, “Sorry. Rihanna comes here too, and even she doesn’t demand that”. Faux-Marilyn acquiesced.