Wednesday, March 31, 2010


April 1, 2010 Vatican City:  The Pope held a new conference this morning live from Italy, directly from his massive palace bedroom.  First he reminded the faithful to dig deep in their pockets for donations to the church (those billions in payouts have to come from someplace).  Then, with 5 Bishops on either side of him in the official "Pope Bed" (which is 6 times the size of a California King and has a mirror on the ceiling), he slipped on his tall fancy white hat and announced for the 1,000,000 time that "homo-sexuality" is evil!  The visitors were hoping he might admit his errors to all those kids who paid the price, but then they took notice of a signed painting of Carl Rove (President Bush's hack who liked to use homophobia as a political scare tool to win elections) above the massive bed.  He's using a Rove classic of diverting attention from the real subject to that old standby of "gays are sinners."  The Pope then announced that he supported an exciting new product to help prevent further 'mean gossip about the church' from people who are only "human" and not above the law as he, his bishops, and Carol Rove, are.  Next he played this video to the crowd to show how the product worked:

and thanks to our friends at

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Ricky Martin Comes Out and Barbara Walters Admits Her 'Inappropriate Question'

Just how powerful can media gossip become?  As we've been looking at with the life of Rock Hudson and threats of him being outed by magazines in the 1950's....consider that recently Barbara Walters said she regretted trying to force Ricky Martin to open up about his sexuality (if he was gay or not)  in a 2000 interview, adding that her questioning may have ended his career:

"In 2000, I pushed Ricky Martin very hard to admit if he was gay or not, and the way he refused to do it made everyone decide that he was," she told The Toronto Star.  

During the interview, Walters pushed him into a corner: "You know, you could stop these rumors. You could say, as many artists have, 'Yes I am gay,' or you could say, 'No I'm not,' or you could leave it, as you are, ambiguous. I don't want to put you on the spot, but it's in your power to do it."

She went on to say that: "A lot of people say that destroyed his career, and when I think back on it now, I feel it was an inappropriate question."

Today, after years of rumors about his sexuality, the sexy Latin singer posted the following message on his official Web site: "A few months ago I decided to write my memoirs, a project I knew was going to bring me closer to an amazing turning point in my life. From the moment I wrote the first phrase I was sure the book was the tool that was going to help me free myself from things I was carrying within me for a long time. Things that were too heavy for me to keep inside. Writing this account of my life, I got very close to my truth. And this is something worth celebrating.

For many years, there has been only one place where I am in touch with my emotions fearlessly and that's the stage. Being on stage fills my soul in many ways, almost completely. It's my vice. The music, the lights and the roar of the audience are elements that make me feel capable of anything. This rush of adrenaline is incredibly addictive. I don't ever want to stop feeling these emotions. But it is serenity that brings me to where I'm at right now. An amazing emotional place of comprehension, reflection and enlightenment. At this moment I'm feeling the same freedom I usually feel only on stage, without a doubt, I need to share.

Many people told me: "Ricky it's not important", "it's not worth it", "all the years you've worked and everything you've built will collapse", "many people in the world are not ready to accept your truth, your reality, your nature". Because all this advice came from people who I love dearly, I decided to move on with my life not sharing with the world my entire truth. Allowing myself to be seduced by fear and insecurity became a self-fulfilling prophecy of sabotage. Today I take full responsibility for my decisions and my actions.
If someone asked me today, "Ricky, what are you afraid of?" I would answer "the blood that runs through the streets of countries at war...child slavery, terrorism...the cynicism of some people in positions of power, the misinterpretation of faith." But fear of my truth? Not at all! On the contrary, It fills me with strength and courage. This is just what I need especially now that I am the father of two beautiful boys that are so full of light and who with their outlook teach me new things every day. To keep living as I did up until today would be to indirectly diminish the glow that my kids where born with. Enough is enough. This has to change. This was not supposed to happen 5 or 10 years ago, it is supposed to happen now. Today is my day, this is my time, and this is my moment.

These years in silence and reflection made me stronger and reminded me that acceptance has to come from within and that this kind of truth gives me the power to conquer emotions I didn't even know existed.

What will happen from now on? It doesn't matter. I can only focus on what's happening to me in this moment. The word "happiness" takes on a new meaning for me as of today. It has been a very intense process. Every word that I write in this letter is born out of love, acceptance, detachment and real contentment. Writing this is a solid step towards my inner peace and vital part of my evolution.

I am proud to say that I am a fortunate homosexual man. I am very blessed to be who I am."

In August 2008, Martin became the father of twin boys, named Matteo and Valentin, via a surrogate mother. 

Monday, March 29, 2010

Leonardo DiCaprio Portrayed Gay Poet Arthur Rimbaud

It's reported that Leo turned down the Mark Wahlberg role in Boogie Nights, choosing instead to act in Titanic, opposite Kate Winslet. Smart became the biggest box-office success in film history up until then. 

In 1995, a very young DiCaprio starred in Total Eclipse, playing the tortured gay poet Arthur Rimbaud, seducing fellow poet Paul Verlaine (played by David Thewlis). The film didn't do well at the box office when it was first released, but videos later sold briskly after the success of Titanic maybe because one scene exposes DiCaprio's full-frontal 21-year-old manhood?).

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Deconstructing Rock Hudson: Can a Wife Save His Career?

As Phyllis Hudson sat alone crying in their two-bedroom home high above Sunset Boulevard, she had to wonder if marrying Rock had really been worth it all.  

In the early 1950’s Phyllis Gates was just another working girl, looking for a good job and someday maybe a nice husband. She had already been a sales clerk, flight attendant, and a talent agent's secretary (in New York City) before she found a secretary job with influential Hollywood agent Henry Willson in Hollywood. Willson’s complex and powerful role in gay Hollywood deserves (and will get) its own post here at VGMH.  He represented Rock Hudson, Tab Hunter, Rory Calhoun, and a string of other young, handsome and sexy male stars. While not proven, many suspect the pretty Gates may have been hired with the intention of becoming a heterosexual publicity "beard" for Willson’s many closeted actors.

In October 1954, the petite-sized Phyllis met the over-sized 6’ 4” Rock for the first time when he walked into Willson's office for a meeting. She was star struck with the charming movie star (She is in the middle of the photo, right).  A few days later, Willson invited her to have drinks and dinner with him and Hudson. She said yes, and the next day, Hudson himself asked her out. It sounded like a fairy tale come true, only this story wasn’t exactly what it seemed to be...Prince Charming liked men.  Lots of men.

Of course, immediately their budding “romance” was leaked to the news media. Hollywood Reporter columnist Mike Connolly noted that: ''Rock Hudson has been enjoying hideaway dinners with Henry Willson's purty secy, Phyllis Gates." This was exactly what they wanted out in the press.  At the time, Hudson's career was soaring in popularity, but he and his agent were struggling to keep his private life a secret, something Hudson had not helped to do thanks to his sexual activities. It's reported that Willson had already fended off a blackmailer who said he had incriminating photos of himself with Hudson, and the agent later learned that Confidential magazine was working on an expose of “Hudson's homosexuality.” To make matters worse, studio heads informed Willson that they had done all they would to suppress the stories and if Hudson wanted to remain a star he had better clean up his personal sexual exploits with other men, stay out of risky situations that could get him into legal trouble, and generate a straight personal life image to the public. In September 1955, Life magazine did a cover story: Hudson: ''Hollywood's Most Handsome Bachelor" and reported in the story that ''Fans are urging 29-year-old Hudson to get married…or explain why not."

Things moved fast to save his image.  Gates accepted Hudson's surprise marriage proposal. ''Living with Phyllis helped normalize Rock's reputation in Hollywood," Sara Davidson wrote in the 1986 book ''Rock Hudson: His Story by Rock Hudson and Sara Davidson.

''I was very much in love," Gates later told Davidson. ''I thought he would be a wonderful husband. He was charming, his career was red hot, he was gorgeous. . . . How many women would have said no?" On November. 9, 1955 (not long after Hudson finished work on the movie Giant) he and Gates were married in Santa Barbara, with Willson and three friends in attendance. Willson had arranged the secret wedding quickly to fend off the nasty gossip about Rock, and minutes after the ceremony ended, he called Hollywood gossip columnists Hedda Hopper and Louella Parsons with the good news.

After their honeymoon in Jamaica, tabloids reported that the couple had settled into married life. The fan magazines (and fans) ate it up. One magazine story, headlined ''When Day Is Done, Heaven Is Waiting," quoted Hudson as saying, ''When I count my blessings, my marriage tops the list."  

In a world of make-believe (to make money), stories and images were what was sold...Just as "Rock Hudson" was a fabrication, so was the marriage, and so was the press about the ideal husband and wife.  The public wanted their sexy leading man to be straight and happily married, and that's what they gave them.  Only when the press was gone, reality always returned, and Rock would venture out to find handsome young men, leaving Phylis alone.


Saturday, March 27, 2010

Deconstructing Rock Hudson: Gay Files, Hollywood Vice and Sex Orgies

This series tracks the gay history of Hollywood's invention, Rock Hudson.  Instead of going in chronological  order of  Rock Hudsons' life and times, VGMH will look at significant events that also often reflected on how gay men were treated and viewed during these periods. 

We know from U.S. government records made public that Rock Hudson was interviewed by the FBI on the Paramount Studios Lot on June 23, 1965 about his sexuality.  Although Hudson was never the subject of a specific criminal investigation, several FBI offices gathered information on him from informants going as far back as 1960, as reported by the Dallas Times Herald, which worked to get the FBI files released.   It looks like the govenment must go through a lot of thick black marking pens, based on all the data that they decided to keep classified in the Hudson reports (below images).  As one of Hollywood's top box office stars, the FBI apparently was concerned Rock might play a federal agent in movies.  Also included in his files is a report from the Hollywood Vice Squad that lists Rock Hudsons' name in relation to "orgies" and police raids involving other "prominent individuals" (pleasee see below image of the document).  Never mind that the FBI Director, J. Edgar Hoover, was a self-hating gay man who worked against other gay men (but that's another story).

From the FBI file on Rock Hudson:
  • June 2, 1965  Memorandum recommends Los Angeles be authorized to interview movie actor Rock Hudson for information about subject [redacted]. [...]
  • Los Angeles has advised that it is common knowledge in the motion picture industry that Hudson is suspected of having homosexual tendencies. [...]
  • In view of the information that Hudson has homosexual tendencies, interview will be conducted by two mature experienced Special Agents. [...]
  • Hudson was interviewed on June 23, 1965, and the FBI report on that meeting deals mainly with questions about his former wife, Phyllis Gates:
  • Mr. Hudson made a telephone call in the presence of the SAs, FBI, and confirmed that his divorced wife is reported to be in Europe, at an unknown address, and that her alimony checks are sent to the Swafford [advertising] agency. [...]
There was also a heavily redacted report to FBI director J. Edgar Hoover in February 1960 from the Hollywood Vice Squad:

  • Files of guests' names were confiscated during the raid and as a result, many prominent names have reportedly been revealed as participating in these orgies. Among these, according to [redacted] are the movie names [redacted], ROCK HUDSON, [redacted]. [...]
This excerpt appeared in an October 28, 1966, memorandum to a special assistant to President Lyndon B. Johnson in response to a request for information on Hudson:
  • Rock Hudson has not been the subject of an FBI investigation. During 1965, however, a confidential informant reported that several years ago while he was in New York he had an "affair" with movie star Rock Hudson. The informant stated that from personal knowledge he knew that Rock Hudson was a homosexual. The belief was expressed that by "personal knowledge" the informant meant he had personally indulged in homosexual acts with Hudson or had witnessed or received the information from individuals who had done so.
On July 16, 1969, just after the release of Midnight Cowboy and the Stonewall Riots, the Los Angeles bureau wrote a memo to the FBI director about Hudson (related to a new movie he was getting ready to film) and what the bureau found in the files on him:

  • There were several references to ROCK HUDSON, actor, alleging he was a homosexual and/or bi-sexual. After that sentence, someone hand wrote "SEX OFFENDER" on the memo.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Actor Ewan McGregor

Before he became Obi Wan (Star Wars), Scottish actor Ewan McGregor was already famous as the actor who didn't have any issues with showing his penis in movies. His cock made its brief debut in 1996's Trainspotting and then returned again in The Pillow Book.

Equally at home in major box office productions and small movie house flicks, by 2003, straight Mr. McGregor was already a gay favorite when he starred in the little movie Young Adam.  

Because his male nudity and sex scenes are within the framework of "art" films and major releases, Ewan's penis has become a standard interview topic and generally accepted and kidded about. 

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Father and Son Gay Slurs: Caan Cocks (James Caan and Sean Caan)

In 2007, actor Scott Caan (the adult son of actor James Caan) seemed to get very angry at TMZ parazzi who were taking photos of him in public.  When a TMZ cameraman was close to Scott...well, here's the quote:

"You tryin to be nice about it? I saw you shootin me while I was eatin a cheeseburger. Fuckin jack-off. I'll give you a thousand dollars to come fight me, how bout that? $2,000. $2,500. Ten grand if you'll fight me. Get a real job, you faggot.

GLAAD reacted...and Scott (who VGMH guesses needs all the audience he can get, and without gay boycotts) quickly apologized “I am sorry for using such a derogatory word. I was being harassed by a paparazzi, and unfortunately, the word slipped out. I don’t ever condone the use of that word and I deeply apologise to anyone whom I may have offended.” 

Then last October, it was reported that his famous father, James Caan, was also caught by TMZ in public. When asked for his thoughts on the Letterman sex scandal, Caan was said to have replied: "it's not as bad as screwin' guys."

Since the son did the right thing and apologized, there's no hard feelings here at VGMH.  By the looks of these photos, Scott sure seems to enjoy showing off his beefcake, and if he's smart (which he seems to be) he won't say anymore homophobic things that could drive away potential fans who enjoy looking at (errrrr...who enjoy his acting talents).  Since he made nice, here's some photos of Scott, including one accidental nudie, reportedly taken while he was changing diving gear.  Sean was recently added to the cast of a remake of Hawaii Five-o.

As for James and his decide.  Comments welcome below.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

March 1980 Playgirl Model Jerry Pedersoli

March 1980 was full of nifty stuff for the up-to-date creative gal (and guy).  In addition to a James Caan interview, the magazine featured model was Jerry Pedersoli.  Also in this issue were the Men of Madison Avenue. 

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

1976: Lifeguard Starring Sam Elliott

Lifeguard came out in 1976 and many believed it was made because of the big $$ success that Shampoo had the previous year (please see the VGMH story on Shampoo, earlier this month with Warren Beatty).  Both movies trace the emotional comlications of sexy men who are at personal crossroads.   

Rick Carlson (Elliott) is a Los Angeles beach lifeguard in his early thirties. He's still darn sexy and he knows it, but after 8 years on the beach, his time as a prime stud is passing quickly in the world of hard bodied twenty-somethings. Parker Stevenson appears as a college kid learning the ropes of lifesaving from Elliott.  Rick's father thinks he's wasting his life, and after his 15th high school reunion Rick may agree with him.  He's having an identity crisis.  And the poor guy has women with a seventeen-year-old (jail bait) high schooler who has a crush on him (who he's noticed as well), and the second is the recently-divorced high school sweetheart from his youth, who he reconnects with at his reunion.

Elliott is hunky and hairy with a great slow voice and a studly mustache, but the real meat in this film rests in the quiet scenes where Mr. Elliott contemplates and reacts to some radical changes in his character's easygoing existence, as new opportunities seem to provide the perfect escape from being an aging sex object.  Will he grow up and wear clothing all the time, or remain in shorts at the beach?
Most of the cast & crew were from TV work, as director Daniel Petrie was also very comfortable with the small screen.  Keeping things simple helps the movie define itself, and the performances are very natural.   After Lifeguard, Sam Elliot went back to TV before his film career got a boost via Peter Bogdanovich's Mask (1985).  

Thanks to Dan for the photos!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Midnight Cowboy (end of series)

NOT A HAPPY ENDING (but a powerful one)
One of the most striking elements of Midnight Cowboy was that it left the audience in less than a "feel good" place when the lights came back on. As some critics remarked, it's not the kind of movie that you can walk away from and easily forget.

As the action comes to a close on the screen, Joe is remarking that: "Everything we got only set us back ten and some... Hey you know, Ratso. (Correcting himself) Rico, I mean. I got this damn thing all figured out. When we get to Miami, what we'll do is get some sort of job, you know. Cause hell, I ain't no kind of hustler. I mean, there must be an easier way of makin' a living than that. Some sort of outdoors work. What do ya think? Yeah, that's what I'll do. OK Rico? Rico? Rico? Hey, Rico? Rico?"

But his friend can't hear him sunshine, palm trees and views of sandy beaches pass by the bus window, Joe realizes that his best friend has passed away.  Joe tells the driver (Al Stetson), who pulls over, walks to the back, and asks Joe to close Rico's eyes.  As he returns to drive, he reassures the other passengers: "Okay, folks, everything's all right. Nothing to worry about...Okay folks, nothin' to worry about. Just a little illness. We'll be in Miami in just a few minutes."

Joe, with tears forming in his eyes, affectionately wraps his arm around Rico's shoulder and holds him, cuddling in grief.

It was June 28, 1969 and Midnight Cowboy (already out for a month) was causing a lot of sensationalized publicity for its X rating; a result of its sexual/gay content, which focused on the dirty ugly mean streets where many gays and drug addicts lived in New York City.  In the early hours of that Saturday, a group of patrons at a Greenwich Village gay bar responded with violent resistance to unwarranted police harassment.  What had they done to get arrested by the police?  Nothing more than being gay.  For six days, what would come to be known as the Stonewall Riots continued intermittently, with the swelling, agitated crowd pelting the cops with loose change, bottles, and even Molotov cocktails.

While certainly not even close to being the major cause of the riots, many cultural historians point to the movie and Stonewall as not being totally isolated events, either, but significant cultural milestones pointing to bigger changes beginning to happen in society as a whole. Consider that Ratso and Joe live at the margins of New York, in a netherworld that the film explicitly portrays as a place where "respectable" society doesn't have to deal with or see them.  A world where violence and abuse received a blind eye from the law.  They were thought of as throw-away people in the movie and in the Stonewall bar.   As suggested, "The same rebellion that allowed a major studio to take a chance with Midnight Cowboy fueled the riots. People demanded changes in how they were treated by authority, and how things were portrayed in their entertainment."

News of the riots only helped sales of the movie.  The film was a box office hit that nobody could deny, making more than $44 million (a huge amount for a movie to make in that era). The budget to make it was only $3.5 million.  While voting was going on in Hollywood for the Academy Awards, some suggested that support for the riots may have been a factor in the results for the movie.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Dreamy Eligible Bachelors Meet Smut Sex Reality: Cosmo's Daniel Kirk and Derek Hawkes

Straight bachelors, bachelors, bachelors...they have such huge problems, looking for that special hair conditioner along with that special woman who will love them for the wonderful men they know they are, and not just trying to get into their $150 jeans because they're good looking.  Ummm they would probably remind me that they are VERY good looking.  The theme of sexy men looking for love sells, plus it's also an excuse to look at hot dudes (either on TV reality shows or in magazines) which is always fun entertainment. 

Of course, VGMH also believes that when a handsome, successful man with a great personality just can't seem to ever find his true love connection, maybe there's something else going on.  No matter.... these "smut light" stories are intended for the viewers, as men decide what woman can keep them happy in the sack and still be a perfect wife and mother in other rooms of the house (and have almost as perfect hair and teeth as they do).  It's cheap to produce and gets high ratings, and the melodrama of what happens makes good press coverage for grocery store magazines.

But sometimes, the crisp cotton sheet on a bachelors' bed gets lifted, and laying naked underneath the covers isn't exactly who people thought he was...just consider what happened with Cosmopolitan magazine and their Hot Bachelors 2008 annual list and photo spread of the hottest bachelors from each state in America.

Among the sexy single studs was Daniel Kirk, a handsome 25 year old "UPS Staffer" listed as being from Charleston, West Virginia.   According to Cosmopolitan magazine, chicks can make Daniel "melt" by nibbling on his ears, and he thinks sex on the first date is "skanky".  It's obvious that Dan's thought a lot about looking for true love, as he suggests:: "Women often accuse good-looking guys of being players, but it's totally not true, we're not all out there trying to get as many women as we can."  This sounds so dreamy, women around the country were no doubt getting their Victoria Secrets all in a tizzy thinking about such a wonderful guy.  Of course, if they wanted to see what Daniel looked like naked with a rock-hard boner curling up his tummy, all they had to do was look at the May 2008 PlaygirlOOOPS! 

The story began with gay internet blogs, and it turned out that a second Cosmopolitan bachelor had also done some naughty nude posing (In addition to Playgirl, at least one of them was reported to have been on gay web sites)...according to the New York Post:   "Two bachelors had their invitations to Cosmopolitan's Tuesday night bash at Mansion yanked after editors found out the himbos had been getting naked for cash. Every year, Cosmo picks a guy from each state to be part of its "50 Hottest Bachelors" contest, and flies the winners to New York for a party. But this year, Hearst higher-ups cooled off on Maine's Derek Hawkes and West Virginia's Daniel Kirk after linked to photos of them on different nude Websites. A rep for Cosmo confirmed the bachelors were disinvited from the event." 

Saturday, March 20, 2010

1969: Midnight Cowboy (part two)

Before Dustin Hoffman auditioned for Midnight Cowboy, he knew that his screen image might prevent him from getting the job. To prove he could act the rough part, he asked one of the films' executives to meet him on a street corner in Manhattan.  Dustin then dessed himself in filthy rags. The executive arrived at the corner and waited, barely noticing Dustin (dressed as a beggar) who was less than 10 feet away from him. Dustin hit on strangers for their spare change.  After a few moments, he walked over and revealed his true identity.  He got the job.

Despite the fact that Joe Buck was a character out of his element in New York City, Jon Voight was ironically a native New Yorker, hailing from Yonkers. It's reported he earned $14,000 for the movie.

The movie uses its two stars as mirrors on society, and without preaching, shines a light on the hypocritical underside of what's viewed as being mainstream successful lives. The only way the story could have worked (to draw big audiences) was for Joe to be a totally straight macho cowboy...and even though this is how he's presented... the things he does to make money are less than straight and less than heroic.  Joe’s unsuccessful in his attempts to be hired by wealthy women to fuck them.  When finally successful in bedding a middle-aged New Yorker (Sylvia Miles), Joe's attempt to "talk business" results in the woman breaking down in tears and Joe giving her $20 instead. 
At one point, a couple approach Joe and Ratso in a diner and give Joe a flyer inviting him to a party. Joe smokes a joint, takes a pill, and begins to hallucinate. He leaves the party with a socialite (Brenda Vaccaro) who agrees to pay him $20 for fucking her. Only Joe can't perform, and she teasingly suggests that he may be gay. Joe figures doing her will prove he's not, so he rises to the event.  In the morning, the socialite sets up a friend to be Joe's next customer, and his career as a gigolo is on its way.
Only when Joe comes home, Ratso is in bed, sweating and feverish, and admits to Joe that he's unable to walk anymore.  Joe wants to take Ratso to a doctor, but his friend refuses. He wants to leave New York for Miami.  A frightened Joe leaves their apartment to scrounge some money. He picks up a closeted guy looking for sex (Barnard Hughes), but the man tries to send Joe away at the last minute, out of self-hatred.  Joe's desperation boils over when the trick gives him a religious medallion instead of  the promised cash. He beats and robs the man, stuffing the telephone receiver into his mouth when he thinks the man is calling the hotel front desk for help.

He returns to find that Ratso is seriously ill with pneumonia...and Joe gets them on a bus going south.  At an extended rest stop in northern Florida, Joe buys them new warm-weather clothing, and symbolically throws his 'midnight cowboy' stuff  into the garbage. As they head to Miami, he's dressed Ratso in a tropical shirt, telling him: "Yours was the only one left with a palm tree on it. The clothes are damn cheap here too, you know that?" Joe ponders the way things will be once they get into Miami, thinking of new positive opportunities for work. By helping the street beggar from New York (who also helped Joe when nobody else would) and becoming a family together, Joe's faith and ability to love have been restored ...and for the first time in the film, he abandons the name Ratso and calls his friend by his real name, Rico.

PART THREE; Not a happy ending; Midnight Cowboy opens; The Stonewall Riots (end of series).