Showing posts with label Out of Closet. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Out of Closet. Show all posts

November 2, 2016

Be Proud of The Out 100

I hope you feel both inspired and proud by the Out 100 list of this year. publishes the list every year and you can click or paste on your browser the following link and take a look at this year’s  list.

There are more than 100 well known LGBT people in our world community and they belong to all different social spheres.  Some bring us shame but most of them make us proud. Just like in any other community we have the scientists and the space cadets covering magazines and newspapers as well as blogs as this one all over the world.  

Sometimes I wonder how can we have homophobes and bigots in our out community since we know discrimination first hand but we are only human and a product of our environment. We are however special in the courage that it takes to come out and stay out. Some have come out to later on say they didn’t mean it and that’s why the coming out is a process not just one event, a race to the finish yet  not a sprint. We have to come out many times in our lives from our families to our friends.

We take every day as it comes but most of us once decided we need to be ourselves and we are tired of lying and living someone else's lives we obtain a peace of mind and growth of spirituality, the kind that has nothing to do with religion but from the peace and relief we acquire when we know who we are.  We might not know why we are here and sometimes where are we going but is so important to know who we are so we can take advantages of our attributes and control our shortcomings.

September 17, 2016

Gay,Out and a Movie Star in1926

The story of William Haines is remembered, if it’s remembered at all, as the story of the first openly gay Hollywood star. The legend holds that Haines was a major box office draw who was fired by Louis B. Mayer for refusing to drop his live-in boyfriend and marry a woman. This isn’t totally inaccurate, but the truth of Billy Haines’ life in Hollywood is a little more complicated. Haines was born on the eve of the first day of 1900, and his biographer William J. Mann stresses that he was the ultimate child of the 20th century. And as such, he thrived during the Roaring ’20s, and struggled to adapt to the limited opportunities of the following decade, and then he reinvented himself in time to take advantage of the prosperity and consumerism of the midcentury. And through it all he was, proudly, one-half of Hollywood’s first openly gay marriage. 

From 1926 to 1931, thanks to hits like Brown of Harvard and Tell It to the Marines, Billy Haines was ranked as one of the Top 10 box office stars in Hollywood. By 1929, his studio boss, MGM’s Irving Thalberg, was holding up Haines as both the prototypical symbol of male youth of his day, and also the new model of a male romantic star. “The idealistic love of a decade ago is not true today,” Thalberg said. “William Haines, with his modern salesman attitude to go and get it, is more typical.”

By the time Thalberg made that speech, he and everyone else in the Hollywood community knew that Haines was, for all intents and purposes, married to a man. In 1926, on a trip to New York while on the cusp of his superstardom, Haines had a whirlwind fling with a 21-year-old former sailor names Jimmy Shields. When Haines returned to L.A., he brought Shields with him, and moved his new boyfriend into his house and got him work as an extra at MGM. Following the example of his friends from his days in New York’s Greenwich Village, Billy was intent on living with Jimmy without embarrassment or apology.

That Haines was living openly with another man, thereby destroying any possibility that he might not be gay, initially did absolutely nothing to impact Haines’ popularity around town or at his home studio. They were one of the few couples to make it into Marion Davies and William Randolph Hearst’s inner circle, meriting invitations to San Simeon nearly weekly. And the local movie press knew, too, but nobody had any incentive to publish an exposé about it or anything. If any journalist had, he would have been frozen out of MGM for the rest of time. And at this point in time, as long as they weren’t hurting anybody, which they weren’t, nobody cared. 

Sometimes Billy would get asked a softball question about his love life, which he was always able to deflect with a wisecrack. Journalist and subject would wink at each other, the actor would be classified in print as an eligible or confirmed bachelor, and everyone would move on. When an earnest journalist from out of town asked him when are you going to get married, Haines would announce he was engaged to an imminently ineligible lady—usually frumpy slapstick comedienne Polly Moran.

During the 1920s, Haines always found ways to answer questions about his personal life without either lying or telling the truth. It wasn’t evident to every reader at the time, but reading some of the quips today, his use of sarcasm and irony speak volumes in their own way. If nothing else, Haines was always looking for an opening for a bawdy wisecrack or double-entendre. When an MGM voice couch informed Haines that his vocal technique was “lip lazy,” Haines fired back, “I’ve never had any complaints before.”

In fact, William Haines was actually better set up for the transition than many stars. His voice was robust and not thickly accented. Also, unlike stars like John Gilbert whose essential thing was made obsolete by sound film, Billy’s signature in silent films had been wisecracks, inserted as intertitles to make it seem like Billy was a master of wit and timing. In fact, he was, and Haines was easily able to perform the same trick accomplished by the intertitles as a talking comedian. Haines made the transition to talkies seamlessly, and 1929 would be the peak of his box office stardom. The trouble was still to come.

In 1930, every studio in Hollywood agreed to follow the moral guidelines laid out by the Hays Production Code, but it was an empty promise: Everyone knew the Hays Office had no ability to punish violators of the code. If anything, while producers were waiting for the censors to come up with a way to enforce their puritan code, movies got racier. But the existence of the code made studios more apt to use the morals clauses that were now standard elements of almost every performer’s contract to scare stars into improving their public behavior.

Most stars signed the contract, and then either tried to stay out of trouble, or assumed that the studio wouldn’t use the clause against them. At the peak of his stardom in the late 1920s, Billy Haines reportedly managed to get the morals clause removed from his contract entirely, by refusing to sign until it was. As a trade-off, MGM would only sign him to two-year extensions at a time, rather than the five-year contracts that were more standard.

His films began to slide at the box office over the course of 1930, and in 1931, Haines’ MGM contract was canceled, only for Haines to be brought back to the studio as a featured player at a far reduced salary and billing. In 1931, in an attempt to rebrand Haines from the wisecracking post-college boy into a more adult romantic lead, Haines was cast in a movie called Just a Gigolo, in which he played a trust-fund playboy who makes a bawdy bet with his uncle that if he could get a society princess to give up her virtue within a month, then he wouldn’t have to get married. 

Haines was told going in that he was to abandon his usual winking, wisecracking persona for this film, but it seems like he ignored that edict. Just a Gigolo, which debuted the song later covered by David Lee Roth, did OK, but it failed to turn around the impression that William Haines’ star was slipping. Haines was informed that his contract wouldn’t be renewed, and the trade papers said it was because the star was angling for more money. Then MGM agreed to take Billy back, but at a much-reduced salary, and with his name demoted to below the titles of his films. He was forced to go on a dreaded personal appearance tour. He took up a strenuous diet and exercise regime, rationalizing that losing weight might help him appear younger and fresher.

Many versions of Haines’ story say that at this point, in early 1933, Louis B. Mayer called Haines into his office and told him that it was time for Billy to get serious, drop Jimmy and get married. In this version of the story, Billy says, “I am married.” He chooses Jimmy over Mayer, walks out the door, and becomes Hollywood’s most in-demand interior designer.

William Haines did become Hollywood’s most in-demand interior designer after his career at MGM ended, but the rest of the story is up for debate. For years, everyone at MGM had known that William Haines was gay and living with a man he loved. So why would Mayer make an ultimatum now?

Members of the Hollywood gay scene of the time believe that Billy had taken the hit for Jimmy, who had been arrested in a bar or a park, where he was known to cruise. But if that happened, it was covered up. What we do know is that Billy’s star had dimmed. We know he was getting older, and he hadn’t successfully transitioned out of his Harvard-boy persona. We know the depression had everyone scared about profit margins, and most studios were cutting salaries, if not straight up canceling the pricy contracts of aging stars. 

We know that many other stars in Hollywood had gay relationships, but most presented themselves as straight when told to. Billy’s old friend Archie Leach, for instance, is acknowledged now by many biographers to have lived as a gay man before he came to Hollywood and to have continued relationships with men after he became Cary Grant. But Cary Grant, and just about everyone else, was willing to play by the rules of the game that Louis B. Mayer and the other studio moguls set. They were willing to marry women—in Cary Grant’s case, several women—and keep their true private lives private. And we know that with the impending enforcement of the Production Code, which would happen in 1934, every studio was under pressure to make it seem like their houses were clean. And so, William Haines, the top box office star in all of Hollywood in 1929, found himself, four years later, out of a job.

Or, at least, out the job that had made him famous. William Haines had never aspired to be an actor, and once the rug was pulled from under him at MGM, he got right back on his feet. In 1930, Billy had become part owner of an antiques shop on La Brea Avenue. By that point he had already turned his own home into a showroom for his exquisite taste, and his guests were always asking where they could buy things like the ones he had, so he gave them a place to do it. He’d go into a starlet’s house and toss out the gaudy animal prints and gilded ornaments that she bought with her first flush of cash because she thought that was fancy, and replace everything with genuinely fancy stuff, high-quality, sophisticated simplicity, with elect pops of color or flashy accents. Hand-painted wallpaper became one of his signatures, as did low-to-the ground sitting rooms, outfitted with ottoman tables perfect for casual entertaining. Occasionally his antiques and art were borrowed for use in movies—paintings personally owned by William Haines lined the walls of Tara in Gone With the Wind.

Above all else, Billy understood how people liked to live, and he was able to create spaces in which they could do it. Billy and Jimmy enjoyed a high position in Hollywood for decades. Some members of the Hollywood community shunned them for living openly, but their true friends stayed loyal. They continued to attend parties at San Simeon, and at Joan Crawford’s house. And they stayed together until Billy’s death, in 1973. In fact, when his lover of nearly 50 years was gone, Jimmy Shields didn’t know what to do with himself.
Joan Crawford tried to help, but it was no use. He soon killed himself. He left behind a note that said, “It’s no good without Billy.”
Picture from William Haines/History

July 11, 2015

GOP Bank Exec Blackmailed Trial [by Gay Porn Actor ends with Verdict]

 Republican Contributor Teofil bank Donald Burns
 and Porn Actor Jarec Wentworth

Teofil Brank, the gay porn actor who performs under the name Jarec Wentworth, has been found guilty of extorting Palm Beach tycoon, MagicJack executive, and Republican political activist Donald Burns of $1.5 million.

Brank, 25, had threatened to expose Burns over their relationship unless the millionaire forked over money and an Audi R8 earlier this year. Burns had also reportedly paid Brank to introduce him to other Sean Cody models and performers. Following an FBI sting in March, Brank was arrested. Rumors over Burns being Brank's victim were confirmed during the trial. 
On Thursday, a Los Angeles jury found Brank guilty on six felony counts. 
Jurors  (according to Courthouse News) were told of Burns trying to set up a gay porn film shoot at his estate in California. There were also details given of sex parties in California and Florida, and of Burns' other relationships with gay models and porn actors.
Another twist in the sordid tale was one gay porn actor named Justin Griggs testifying that he had been flown to Burns' home in Palm Beach and paid to have sex and taking part in group sex. During testimony, Griggs admitted he was reluctant to speak with investigators because of his relationship with a "powerful individual." That individual, Griggs said, was Geffen Records founder and co-founder of Dreamworks SKG, David Geffen. 
Earlier this year, Geffen's 21-year-old ex-boyfriend was charged with stalking the record company mogul.
"It was really just hanging out, surfing, grilling out, going to dinner, and then we would have sex, group sex," Griggs said of Burns' parties in Palm Beach.
Also during the trial, Burns, who is a prominent GOP donor and political activist, admitted to paying Brank and other gay porn stars for sex, as well as paying what he called "referral fees" of up to $2,000 for introductions to other actors and models for sex. 
Burns has donated to Republican candidates such as Jeb Bush and  Mitt Romney. Though he's also known for donating to Barack Obama, John Edwards and Ralph Nader. Burns also donated $400,000, to Florida Red and Blue, a group fighting a gay marriage ban in Florida in 2008.
Brank is now facing up to 53 years in prison. His sentencing is expected to come sometime in September, according to the Smoking Gun.                                    
a WAO!! story

March 24, 2015

NYC Metro area with 756,000 Out Gays

The San Francisco and Portland, Ore., metropolitan areas have the greatest percentage of residents who are gay, as we wrote last week. But those regions do not have the largest gay populations in terms of sheer size. That distinction instead goes to New York and Los Angeles.
Those two metro areas are so large — the only two in the country with more than 10 million residents — that they lead the way on many population counts, including the number of people who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender. About 756,000 people in the New York region fall into that category, according to an analysis of survey data by Gallup, and about 590,000 people in the Los Angeles region do.
You can see a scatterplot comparing the percentage of gay residents in each of the country’s 50 largest metro areas with the number of gay residents. San Francisco has the highest dot, because it has the greatest share of gay residents. New York has the dot farthest to the right, because it has the greatest number of gay residents — though you can also see New York’s share is roughly average for a top-50 metro area.
There is a positive correlation between metro-area size and the share of residents who are gay: Larger regions tend to have a higher percentage of gay residents. That’s why you see more dots in the upper-right portion of the chart than in the lower-right portion.
But the correlation is only modest (8 percent, to be precise). Some large metro areas, like Chicago and Houston, have relatively small gay populations, and some smaller areas, like Portland, have relatively large gay populations.

November 15, 2014

Comedian Josh Thomas and UTube celebrity Troy Sivan among the most compeling LGBT of 2014 Aussies


                                                               O   U   T
 COMEDIAN Josh Thomas and YouTube celebrity and singer Troy Sivan are two Australians among the most compelling LGBT people of 2014 in the annual OUT100 list.
The list, which was announced today, also features X-Men and Inception star Ellen Page, British singer Sam SmithHow I Met Your Mother and broadway star Neil Patrick Harris, and Zachary Quinto. 
Thomas was recognised as one of the “new funnymen”, on the back of his growing US popularity and his semi-autobiographical TV show Please Like Me being nominated for an International Emmy Award in the comedy category. The winner will be announced on November 24 at an awards ceremony in New York.
Sivan was noted for his 2.8 million YouTube subscribers, and his EP Trxye debuted at number five on the Billboard 200, while his first single, Happy Little Pill, has gone gold. Sivan, who also played young James Howlett in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, grabbed media attention in August last year when he came out on his YouTube channel.
The OUT100 list compiled by Out magazine, which reportedly has the highest circulation of any gay monthly publication in the US.
James Whiteside, Star Observer’s May front cover model and principal dancer with the American Ballet Theatre, was also featured on the list. (The Star Observer’s December edition will be available from November 20.)

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