Magazine article Variety

On Role Models, Activism and the Movie Industry's Timidity

Magazine article Variety

On Role Models, Activism and the Movie Industry's Timidity

Article excerpt

Susan Sarandon

When did you first become anLGBTally?

If you're involved in the arts in any way, shape or form, your whole life is completely integrated with gay artists, and creative people who are gay. I started speaking in public in the early days of the AIDS epidemic when there were huge demonstrations that didn't even find their way into the New York Times. Having lost a lot of very close friends, who were given the message to die in shame somewhere out of sight, that activated me very quickly.

Did you know it would be controversial to play a lesbian in 1983's "The Hunger"?

I never went in anticipating the reaction it caused. I thought it was an interesting project. Who wouldn't want to go to bed with Catherine Deneuve? That was a great first experience.

Was that really your first time with a woman?

Yes. I started at the top of the food chain for sure.

Do you think movies have changed people's opinions about gay marriage?

I don't know about movies. I think Ellen DeGeneres did. I think there are certainly people who once they were out and married and especially raising children, they have been positive role models. …

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