GRAND DAME DISHES

Oprah’s Great Lesbian Mix-Up & 15 Other Divine Anecdotes By Liz Smith

liz smith

Liz Smith is literally 92 years old. That means she ran out of fucks to give decades before you were even born. The celebrated celebrity columnist had that moxie on full display during a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, in which she spilled the tea on everyone from Oprah to Liz Taylor to Marlon Brando and Madonna.

Interestingly enough, when Smith wrote rather vaguely about a celeb’s planned coming out way back in 1997 (she was referring to Rosie O’Donnell) Oprah grew “furious” at Smith thanks to the rumors swirling about her friendship with Gayle King. O issued a statement, Ro threw a tantrum and it was another five years before the former Queen of Nice proclaimed that she was a “dyke.”

At the end of the gay, however, Smith gives it to Oprah for sticking with her non-Steadman life partner:

Oprah went right on being friends with Gayle King, and I always admired her for that, because she easily could have just rejected Gayle when rumors about them started spiraling.

Check out 15 other great moments, quotes and reads from the goddess of gossip’s THR interview below.

On Elizabeth Taylor
I loved her. She was just snarky and funny and crazy. Selfish and tremendously generous at the same time.

On Madonna
She’s an extremely talented, deeply complicated woman. We were close for a while, or as close as anyone can get to her.

On Donald Trump
I was just appalled by his treatment of Ivana!

On being outed
I didn’t care about being outed. But I wasn’t going to paint myself purple and walk down Fifth Avenue waving a sign. I was old enough that people could describe me any way they wanted. I feel the same way now.

On putting out
I was living in the Village in a tiny apartment with all sorts of people coming in and out. Marlon [Brando] was dating my friend Elaine Stritch at the time. One night, he called me at home and he said, “Liz, Elaine just keeps letting me kiss her but she won’t go any further.” I said, “Put her on the phone.” I said, “Elaine, you don’t understand about men. They aren’t satisfied with just kissing. So you have to stop being a prude or just end it.”

On coming out
I saw [Barry Diller] him after David Geffen came out and he said, “Liz, do you think I should come out, too?” And I said, “No, Barry, David Geffen needs to come out. He needs a big story or a scandal or a fight to push him in business and make people afraid of him.” But I said, “People are already afraid of you. So what will you gain? And also, you like women.”

On Bette Midler
She’s amazing, but she’s a volatile person.

On Barry Manilow
The funny guy with the grand piano?

On the comment that made her mortal enemies with Jackie O’s sister, Lee Radziwell
“Oh, Liz, what do we care; they’re just a couple of fags! They’re disgusting.” [referring to dueling queens Truman Capote and Gore Vidal]

On Barbara Walters
Well, it turns out Barbara Walters can do without me, though I still consider her a friend. She has done so much for me through the years. But when I lost my column and my power, she kind of lost interest in me.

On Rosie O’Donnell
[S]he’s crazy, that girl. She loses her temper at everything.

On Oprah
I know..to say hello and kiss her and genuflect.

On Hillary Clinton
Maybe it’s like the Republicans say — she lives in her own bubble.

On stars nowadays
Oh, I don’t even know who they are! Suddenly you have to remember a dozen Kardashians, and really, who has the time?…They arrive full-blown from the head of Zeus with not a shred of talent.

On love
The truth is, I had no luck with either sex…

Les Fabian Brathwaite — appalled by the treatment of Ivana!