Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Big Gay Following: Paul Rudd: He's Been the Object of Our Affection since His Breakthrough Role in Clueless. Now, as the Friend In-Law and 40-Year-Old Virgin Veteran Takes the Lead in Two High-Profile Romantic Comedies, Paul Rudd Proves He's Still a Total Baldwin

Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Big Gay Following: Paul Rudd: He's Been the Object of Our Affection since His Breakthrough Role in Clueless. Now, as the Friend In-Law and 40-Year-Old Virgin Veteran Takes the Lead in Two High-Profile Romantic Comedies, Paul Rudd Proves He's Still a Total Baldwin

Article excerpt

This may be your gayest interview ever. Ready?

Bring on the gayness!

Do you think your relationship with Jennifer Aniston's character in the Object of My Affection may have given gay men's straight girlfriends a bit too much false hope?

[Laughs] Yeah, so many people said, "It was so sad. I wanted you guys to get together at the end." I'm like, "Well, yeah, but that's kind of the point." We actually reshot the ending because the studio felt it was too sad. It probably does give false hope, right?

The Clueless DVD extras reveal that you were considered for a number of other roles besides Cher's stepbrother, including Christian, the "friend of Dorothy."

That was actually the one role that I asked if I could really audition for, but I think I was too old. That was my favorite part in the movie, because I thought it was so cool that there was this really cool character who was completely into all the Rat Pack--type stuff and is gay, but it wasn't really a big thing. At that point that was something you didn't really see.

You're often referred to as a "secondary member of the Frat Pack," but could your role in Judd Apatow's upcoming Knocked Up elevate you to primary status?

Maybe I'm a pledge, but I haven't been initiated yet into the brotherhood. It's been pretty great working with Judd and a lot of the same people in the last few movies. I really lucked out getting in with that group.

How much of the "You know how I know you're gay?" exchange between you and Seth Rogen in The 40-Year-Old Virgin was improvised?

The whole thing! "You know how I know you're gay?" wasn't even in the script. We were sitting there waiting to start the scene, and it just started happening because the scene was about how I was thinking about being celibate. Judd said, "Keep going with it!

Was anyone offended?

I know for a fact that Coldplay was offended. [Laughs] Yeah, I don't think Chris Martin found the humor in that scene. And I felt really bad about it after the fact, actually. It was too easy to go for something like Blink 182--you had to use a band that was actually kind of good, and Coldplay just came out because they were so huge at the time. But yeah, somebody told me that they were very offended by it and even put me in the category of Pat Robertson.

You know I know you're gay? You were in The OH in Ohio with Parker Posey and Liza Minnelli.

That makes me supergay. I didn't get to work with her, but I met Liza Minnelli, and she was kick-ass. It was just one of those people you meet and you go, "I get it. I get why this person really is iconic."

You started on Broadway in Three Days of Rain with Julia Roberts--one of the most panned performances of 2006. How did you survive all that negative buzz?

It was a stressful time. It was a little surreal to be working in such close proximity to someone as famous as Julia Roberts and have the flashbulbs and reporters show up at our first preview. …

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