Raymond Burr’s private gay life will soon be made public in a new biography.
The Perry Mason actor told suits and the public that he had lost a wife and son, but Burr actually lived in 35-year long committed relationship with another man, Robert Benevide.
Here’s a taste:
Once Perry Mason took off, the dead-wife-and-son story was repeated time and again. Raymond could have ended it all right then and there, blaming the mix-up on an overeager studio publicist or on his youthful showbiz naÃ¯vetÃ©. But he chose to continue perpetrating the fabrications by refusing to address them.
Raymond’s grueling Perry Mason shooting schedule would have made it difficult for him to have a romance with a member of either sex. So he used his long hours on the set as a convenient excuse whenever the subject of remarrying was raised. “I am an unmarried man, as opposed to a single man,” he lectured one reporter in November 1957.
Clever distinction, no?