Lee Pace Reveals That He Has ‘Dated Men’ And ‘Dated Women’

Lee Pace has never really gone on record about his romantic lifewhich is fine. I do not feel personally victimized for having been left out of Lee Pace’s “🍆APP01NTM3NT” group text.

But in a new profile in W magazine, the actor and star of the upcoming Broadway revival of Tony Kushner’s Angels in America opens up about his sexuality, albeit reluctantly.

Speaking with writer Brian Moylan from one of his idyllic properties in Upstate New York, Pace, who also starred in a recent Broadway revival of Larry Kramer’s The Normal Heart, said that he feels it’s important for gay actors to play the gay roles in these plays, which both explore gay life in New York City as it was impacted by HIV and AIDS.

Moylan, naturally, followed that up by asking Pace how he identifies. The actor appeared surprised and a bit flustered by the question, according to Moylan.

“I’ve dated men. I’ve dated women,” he said. “I don’t know why anyone would care. I’m an actor and I play roles. To be honest, I don’t know what to sayI find your question intrusive.”

Merry Christmas. 🎁

A post shared by Lee Pace (@leeepfrog) on

Pace has never publicly discussed his sexuality, although Hobbit co-star Ian McKellen once referred to him as “openly gay” in a 2014 interview.

That’s obviously his right to continue not publicly discussing his sexuality, but likeif you’re going to talk about the importance of gay actors playing gay roles with a resume that includes multiple gay characters onstage and a bisexual tech founder on TV’s Halt and Catch Fire, you’re kind of opening yourself up to the question.

Anyway, thanks for trusting us enough to share this with us, Lee! We promise not to be weird about it.

18 Ways To Be Less Homonormative In 2018

Before I was trans, I was the epitome of a feminine boy.

I swore up and down that I would never be caught dead dating a feminine person and that I was only attracted to masculine men as if all the feminine men in the world were waiting on me. I was confident in this ideology until my gay uncle (cliché, I know) gently questioned me.

He simply asked me, “Why?”

The epiphany didn’t come until later, but in that moment I realized that I really couldn’t explain why. I said I wanted a “man who acted like a man.” He asked me, “Why?” I replied, “Because I’m feminine and I want someone masculine to balance out the relationship. I don’t want to date someone feminine.” He asked me, “Why?”

I felt like I was being set up. I felt defensive. But I continued. “Because it’d feel too similar. I don’t want to date myself,” I explained. He asked me, “Why?” And it was then that we reached a question that I couldn’t, or didn’t want to, answer.

Over the years I found that homonormativity had shaped me to not only lower others in my community but to lower myself as well. I attacked others as I subconsciously attacked myself. I was mean, exclusive, and nasty. ButI listened to my uncle. I thought about our conversation and I found the courage to admit that I was wrong and found the will to change. And other people can too.

2018 is just another year. But can’t we be a little optimistic and try to actually make this one different? We’re surrounded by homonormativity all the time because we accept it, because we demand that only the people it hurts the most be the ones to fight against it. This guide is necessary because times have to change. There are still 10 months left in this year for us to be better.

1. Stop pretending homonormativity doesn’t exist.

This is step one. Denying the problem only seeks to further disenfranchise the people who it hurts the most and to create an even bigger gap between those with privilege and those without. Contrary to popular belief, admitting bigotry exists, particularly in communities that you’re part of, does NOT mean you yourself are bigoted. You become a bigot when you deny the problem to protect your ego and the hierarchal standings of people who look, act, and live like you.

2. Challenge your preferences.

This one seems to be a particularly difficult one, mostly because people have this tendency to think that other people NEED them to be attracted to them. Challenging your preferences doesn’t mean going out and forcing yourself into relationships with people you aren’t attracted to. Rather, it means keeping yourself open and humble. Saying you’d never date and/or are not attracted to X kind of people is, by definition, prejudice. Unless you’ve met every person in X group all over the world and can safely say you didn’t like a single one of them.

3. Prioritize trans rights.

This means doing more than posting grieving statuses when we’re murdered. It’s a little too late by that point. Get involved. Support trans activists/content makers.

4. Please kill the “I’m not like other gays/lesbians/trans people” schtick.

We get it, you desperately want to fit in with straight people. We also get that you probably have some self-loathing issues going on. Plus, if you think queer people are the meanest and most dramatic people, please read a history book.

5. Take it down about five notches for RuPaul’s Drag Race.

Seriously. The amount of Internet nastiness and obsession with this show is out of control. I myself am a conscious fan meaning, I call it out for its indiscretions and problematic nature while still being able to enjoy it. Those things aren’t mutually exclusive.

6. Read people for their character, not their identities.

This one needs to be emphasized this year, particularly considering last year’s mess around the white trans lady who comes from a certain desperate, attention-seeking reality TV family. No matter how annoying she is, she is trans, and we can’t take her transness away.

7. But also, learn some restraint with reading. (caddy/petty culture)

The caddy/petty culture we live in today is too much. It’s great for a laugh, especially on social media. However, it’s a lot less cute when we’re so obsessed with reading and being witty that we’re unable to be vulnerable or to create safe spaces for people who may be less socially comfortable than others.

8. Understand that Black rights, Latinx rights, Asian rights, and more, ARE queer issues.

This one is pretty much self-explanatory. The queer community is more than sexuality. It’s about the many identities that surround sexuality as well. We can’t decide that issues related to race or class don’t matter to us, because those issues, first and foremost, directly affect people in our community. And secondly, we can’t ask allies to fight for us if we’re not willing to fight for anyone else.

9. Stop comparing diversity of ideas to diversity of identity.

These two things are not even close to the same but so many people liken them to one another, often when they see their own opinions being rejected. Your controversial and divisive opinions are not the same as someone’s marginalized identity because, most of the time, an identity can’t be hidden, while your opinions can.

10. Learn actual queer history and acknowledge the queer people of color and trans women of color who have gotten the queer community where it is today.

Take a class. Read an article. Find a book. Watch a documentary. Don’t watch that awful Stonewall movie. We’ve gotten this far as a community through the leadership and resistance of trans women of color and queer people of color. We ought to celebrate them in the same way that other communities celebrate their activist leaders.

11. Leave femmephobia in the past.

For gay men, specifically, femmephobia often takes the form of “no femmes” on dating sites. But masculine men should be grateful for fems. Without them, who would mascs compare themselves to to feel special?

12. Full stop on Islamophobia.

There are queer Muslims. They are part of our community. If you buy into violent stereotypes about them made by people who will NEVER acknowledge the violent history of Christianity and Catholicism you invite people to do the same to our community.

13. Support non-profits in the queer community.

Activism isn’t free. Resources for queer youth and low-income folks are not free. Court cases for our rights aren’t free. Skip that Starbucks coffee or skip one restaurant trip a month and give money to a non-profit who needs it.

14. Stop gagging over queer Republicans we KNOW they exist.

We know queer Republicans exist, no matter how many feature articles people publish that explore this as some sort of amazing phenomenon. Every community has its flaws.

15. No bottom shaming.

How about thisdon’t have sex if you can’t be sex positive. Simple.

16. No body shaming.

Not your body? Not your business. If you don’t have anything else to say besides an insult about someone’s body, you either a) have too much time on your hands or b) need better material and wit. Spoiler alert, there is no ideal body.

17. No misogyny masquerading as campiness.

Dear gay men: you don’t know how to be women better than women, you don’t have an inherent sense of style or an opinion that every woman wants to hear, and you do NOT have a sassy black woman inside of you. This applies doubly to drag queens.

18. Open your ears and your mind and close your mouth.

We talk a lot but do we actually listen a lot? You can’t learn anything about homonormativity or anything else, if you aren’t ready to listen or if you’re only listening to respond. Not all knowledge you obtain is going to feel good.

Call Me By Your Decade?

I read a review of the latest Björk album in the Harvard Crimson the other day, written by someone obviously younger than myself who professed that the chief thing she knew of the Icelandic singer before listening to her latest release was that she once wore a weird dress to the Oscars that looked like a swan.

I was heartened by the fact that the writer disclosed this with a clear absence of disdain. However, among the sizeable minority of critics who don’t love the uber-poignant Call Me By Your Name (they exist!), there’s a common denominator of the somewhat irate misreading of the era during which the film’s action takes place: the mid-1980s.

But if the chemistry between 17-year-old Elio (Timothée Chalamet) and 24-year-old Oliver (Armie Hammer) and where it leads is what powers this achingly beautiful piece of cinema, it’s arguably director Luca Guadagnino’s faithful re-creation of that ‘80s vibe that amplifies its emotional resonance.
Here are five things that, in one way or another, this movie screams about the 1980s.

The Music

It didn’t take long for the internet to make a meme out of Armie Hammer’s inexpert but earnest grooving to the synth-pop “Love My Way” by The Psychedelic Furs.

The use of the new wave song only affirms the movie’s unapologetic nod to the decade it was a hit in but does something more: you have the main characters actually dancing to and delighting in it. But before the scene becomes celebratory, there is angst as Elio studies Oliver from afar, the camera silently namechecking the queer pathos of The Smiths’ anthemic “How Soon Is Now” from 1985 (opening line: “I am the son and the heir of a shyness that is criminally vulgar”). Only here, Elio will join the action on the dance floor (and those little outdoor discos were very much a thing in Italy then).

Of course, there’s the song “Visions of Gideon” at the end; as the interrogatory lyric “Is it a video” repeats, the audience sees Elio replaying the love affair in his head. Did all that really happen?

It’s almost as if Guadagnino, who is 46, is blowing a bittersweet kiss to the defining pop culture art form of the 1980s: the music video.

The Clothes

With one notable exception, it’s those shorts. You see a lot them in this movie and, obviously, that’s meant to play to the temperature of an inland Italian village in the languid height of summer: it is hot out, friends.

And no doubt there are legions of moviegoers who would agree that seeing Armie Hammer strutting his stuff in shorts that sometimes veer on short shorts (the actor has said that a shot in one scene had to be digitized to conceal his balls) is also pretty sultry.

Did people once actually wear green or white shorts with dopey stripes running down the sides making them look like truncated 1970s tracksuit pants? Hell to the yes, and paired with white tube socks, thank you very much.
And as for that shirt Elio wears at the very end, it might have drifted in from Nick Rhodes’s closet‘80s New Romantic to the max.

The Italy

It’s true that André Aciman’s novel Call Me By Your Name, on which the film is based, is set in 1987 and that Guadagnino turned the clock back further to 1983, but you couldn’t ask for a more faithful evocation of Italian country life during that time.

The story of Elio’s coming of age and attraction to grad student Oliver was filmed in Crema in northern Italy, the action unfolding in and around a lovely villa that Elio’s mother had the good fortune to inherit. As such, some critics have lambasted CMBYN as an elitist romance of the rich and out of touch, but that’s not fair. Many Italians have homes in the country, and not all their last names end in Armani.

And let’s not forget that the co-producer and screenwriter here is none other than James Ivory, one half of the 1980s powerhouse duo Merchant Ivory Productions, whose 1985 film version of the 1908 novel A Room with a View not only nabbed three Oscars but had a new generation of Americans dreaming of lazy summers in Tuscany. That that film also treated audiences to more male frontal nudity than CMBYN notwithstanding, the parallels are clear.

It might be nothing more than coincidence, but the mood of Call Me channels that powerful sense of place that the Merchant Ivory films brought to sensuality-deprived 1980s America.

The Slowness

In the ‘80s going to Europe was still a big deal. No low-cost flights or mileage tickets from New York to Rome to keep those long distance relationships alive, meaning goodbye was often definitive. Cue again Italian lassitude and landscapea more fitting backdrop to a secret 1980s Euro-romance would be hard to find.

And of course, no internet or cell phones meant that words meant more. The closing scene would have looked a lot different and packed way less punch had Oliver merely texted Elio a (for example) peach emoji.

The Fear

In the 1980s, LGBTQ was light years away and even G was rated R. Yes, the 1970s had just happened, but this was a time when some theater audiences actually booed the sight of two homosexual men being homosexual in the 1982 flick Making Love.

And AIDS, the disease that was a dark shadow at the close of the 1970s, was by the 1980s the modern plague. The trauma of AIDS made the stigma of being gay worse and the paralyzing fear of sex trickled down so far that even speaking your feelings, let alone giving them a name, was hard.

To see what Elio and Oliver have, touches anyone who lived through that uneasy time; it reminds us both of possibilities lost, friends who fell, and, maybe through a hot tear or two, of the purity and power of first love.

HRC ‘Takes Fight to Trump’ By Airing Ad Attacking Trans Military Ban on Fox News

Fox News viewers will be treated to an unexpected surprise this week: an ad condemning Donald Trump’s embattled ban on trans military service.

Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest LGBTQ advocacy group, will be airing an advertisement on cable news channelsincluding Fox, CNN, and MSNBCurging the president to allow transgender people to serve openly in the armed forces.

The 30-second spot, which will be broadcast for the first time Friday, features quotes from top officials decrying the president’s July tweets blocking trans people from enlistingwhich were signed into policy the following month. Trump claimed in a series of posts that transgender troops would “not be allowed to serve in any capacity,” citing fear of “tremendous medical costs and disruption.”

The lawmakers and politicians cited in the ad disagree.

Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) refers to the proposal, which has been blocked by a series of federal court rulings, as “discriminatory and counterproductive to our national security.” Sen. Joni Ernst (D-Iowa) claims any recruits who “can meet the standards to serve should be afforded that opportunity,” while Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) adds that “transgender individuals should be treated as the patriots they are.”

Admiral Mike Mullen, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under President Obama, concludes “there’s no reason to single out these brave men and women.”

The commercial ends with a message to viewers.

“Tell Donald Trump and Mike Pence to put our troops ahead of your politics,” the Human Rights Campaign urges.

Although the White House has declined to comment on the ad, HRC spokeswoman Sarah McBride says there’s a reason advocates are “taking the fight to Trump” by airing the TV spot on his favorite network. There’s a “critical window of time” before the president introduces another policy on trans enlistment, as McBride tells the Associated Press.

Gen. James Mattis was scheduled to issue Trump his recommendations on the future of transgender military service last Wednesday, although some reports claim the president received it on Friday. He will reportedly issue a new memorandum later this month.

Although the Defense Secretary allegedly recommended trans people be allowed to serve, Trump frequently ignores the advice of advisors when making key policy decisions. In Fire and Fury, author Michael Wolff claims Trump only thought about the trans military ban for 10 minutes before tweeting it. He had been presented with four options in a briefing on the subject, of which the ban was one.

Trump’s unilateral action reportedly took his top personnel by surprise. Mattis was on vacation at the time the tweets were posted.

The HRC commercial, which cost in the five-figures to produce, will air just days after the Pentagon confirmed the first trans recruit has successfully enlisted, defying Trump’s attempted ban. The spot is similar to a full-page ad run in USA Today earlier this week, which was published in conjunction with advocacy groups like Lambda Legal and OutServe-SLDN.

Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

Nostalgia vs. Reality: Is Everything Sucks the Lesbian Equivalent of ‘My So-Called Life’?

Everything Sucks, a high school comedy/drama set in the fictional town of Boring, Oreg., is Netflix’s love story to the ‘90s. Inspired by the success of the ‘80s nostalgia which helped boost the ratings of Stranger Things, Everything Sucks is a reflection of what Generation Z probably think the ‘90s were all about; Tori Amos, ring pops, and outdated AV equipment. I guess this isn’t entirely incorrect, but much of the show’s engagement with social issues–including its lesbian storyline–have been told through a 21st century lens, which views the decade through very rose-tinted glasses.

Alongside popular teen comedies like Saved by the Bell and Freaks and Geeks, Everything Sucks attempted to draw from another iconic show that helped define the teen experience in the 1990s: My So-Called Life.

Created by Wicked’s Winnie Holzman and first airing in 1994, no other show has come close to capturing the romance and horror of high school. Parents, teachers, bullies, friends, and first loves; My So-Called Life covered it all in its one very long season. Before it was canceled in 1995, MSCL launched the careers of a young Claire Danes and Jared Leto, who endured the awkwardness of teenage romance as the show’s central protagonists Angela Chase and Jordan Catalano. Other shows have tried to emulate aspects MSCL’s realism, but it’s rare to find high school dramas that aren’t saturated with tropes–My So-Called Life transcended this with smart writing and cringe-worthy honesty.

MSCL was one of the first shows on network television to deal with queer diversity head-on in Enrique “Rickie” Vasquez (Wilson Cruz); a Latinx gay kid with a penchant for eyeliner and stylish blazers, who put on a brave face despite dealing with his fair share of issues throughout the show’s 19-episode run. Airing years before Ellen came out and Will & Grace introduced multiple gay characters to mainstream television, Rickie was the first three-dimensional, openly LGBTQ teen to strike a chord with the community, and his struggle for tolerance is one of the very few sympathetic examples of queer representation at the time.

His equivalent in 2018’s Everything Sucks is Kate Messner (Peyton Kennedy); daughter of Boring High School’s principal who, like Rickie, is very aware that she is a lesbian. Kate’s story, however, does not parallel Rickie’s experience, even though they are told only a few years apart.

The American television landscape in the early/mid-1990s was far more limited than it is today, and LGBTQ representation onscreen reflected the politics going on off it. During the ‘90s, the devastation of the AIDS epidemic was still felt deeply within the community, and anti-gay sentiment was rife leading up to the 1997 nomination of the first openly gay commissioner James C. Hormel. U.S senators would openly equate homosexuality to mental illness in the media, beating the fires of intolerance that would lead to the brutal murders of Matthew Shepherd, Brandon Teena, and countless others throughout the decade. The first U.S show to ever depict a gay kiss–between two women during a 1991 episode of L.A. Law–lost five of its sponsors as a result, and it took another nine years before Dawson’s Creek showed an onscreen kiss between two men.

The year My So-Called Life aired was also the year Friends arrived on NBC, competing against the teen drama for ratings along with Mad About You and Seinfeld–all shows which in hindsight perpetuate homophobia, sexism, and either the complete erasure or cartoonish representations of POC; yet collective nostalgia casts an eye of fondness over them. This is the atmosphere which MSCL aired in, and what makes Rickie’s POC/LGBTQ character so way ahead of its time.

Throughout the show Rickie is hassled to the point where he considers arming himself; he’s badly beaten and thrown out of his house by his father, and he constantly tells Angela how lucky and normal and loved she is while going through hell himself. He was the only POC among an all-white cast, doesn’t have a love interest, and spends his time in the girls’ bathroom with Angela and Rayanne (A. J. Langer). While progressive for the time and deeply moving, Rickie’s storyline plays into negative depictions of queer lives that were seen on screen at the time–troubled, sexless, and ultimately suffering alone, except for the presence of one understanding teacher in his life.

Everything Sucks, set only a couple of years after Rickie’s sophomore year at Liberty High, paints a somewhat different picture of being queer during this era.

Kate doesn’t go through the Netflix series free from difficulty because of her sexuality. In the first few episodes she is bullied by her crush Emmaline (Sydney Sweeny) who suspects her of being a lesbian, however this becomes less about Kate’s struggle for tolerance and more about Luke (Jahi Di’Allo Winston)’s mission to make Kate his girlfriend–which she feels pressured to do after rumors about her sexuality spread around the school.

Even when Kate comes out to him during a game of Spin the Bottle, Luke still doesn’t take her seriously, and much of Kate’s sexual realization is linked to Luke’s character growth. Having said this, there were many moments which felt comforting in their familiarity; listening to sad girl rock music, “examining” Playboy Magazines, and pining after the hot straight girl from drama class. It’s light-hearted and adorable, and especially heartwarming when Kate and Emmaline finally share a kiss in the season finale. (It is, however, the most unrealistic part–most of us never got to date the popular girl we pined for.)

Yet with all this faux romantic nostalgia surrounding the ‘90s, it’s easy to forget that life for queer kids during the decade wasn’t quite so idealistic. While there still have a long way to goespecially now in protecting trans and non-binary kids in hostile school environments–there is a lot more representation and understanding that did not exist in 1994, which allows for Kate’s storyline to be viewed positively and told sensitively. In fact, it’s one of the more realistic portrayals of self-acceptance that I’ve seen depicted on television, and honestly? The more accessible LGBTQ storylines in popular media the better.

If Everything Sucks is greenlit for a second season, it will likely deal with Kate coming out to her father, which she attempted to do at the end of the season. If her coming out is met with across-the-board positivity, it would enter the realm of absurdity; would it be cute AF, sure, would it be realistic? Probably not, but that’s not the dark side of the decade Everything Sucks wants to engage with, and it doesn’t have to because it isn’t airing in 1996. MSCL on the other hand, was a groundbreaking moment for queer storytelling, offering an honest, heartbreaking and sadly all-too-familiar representation of growing up gay in the ‘90s.

No, Everything Sucks is not the lesbian version of My So-Called Life, but both represent different experiences on the spectrum of queer identity and coming-of-age, which is nothing if not a good thing.

Police Footage Shows Alleged Las Vegas Trans Bar Shooter

Police have released video footage of a man they say fired into Las Vegas’ only trans bar on Feb. 23, and they are seeking the public’s help in identifying the shooter.

It remains unknown if the shooting at the Las Vegas Lounge was motivated by anti-LGBTQ bias. The two-decades-old bar bills itself as a home to “Las Vegas’ transsexual community, its admirers, and its supporters.”

General Manager Jennifer Hallie tells INTO that at 5:10 am, someone from outside the bar fired shots into the bar, injuring Callie Lou-Bee Haywood while she was sitting with a drink. Haywood, a black trans woman and fixture at the Lounge, lamented the lack of media coverage for the shooting on her Facebook, as previously covered by INTO.

The shooting drew almost no initial media coverage. Las Vegas media outlets have since picked up the story but not all have identified the Las Vegas Lounge as transgender bar or a possible target of anti-LGBTQ violence.

A story by ABC 13 identified Las Vegas Lounge as the target of the shooting, but did not mention that it served the trans community.

Haywood suffered a gunshot wound to the leg, shattering some bones, according to her Facebook. A GoFundMe fundraiser to help with her surgery expenses has already exceeded its $2,000 goal.

Hallie says that despite rumors and false media reports saying otherwise, the shooter had not been asked to leave earlier in the night.

“It was very random. It was just unexpected,” Hallie says. “There had been no contact with him whatsoever.”

Hallie says her staff is cooperating with police, but they do not yet know of a motive for the shooting.

“Of course if this is a hate crime we’ll be the first ones to scream at the top of our our lungs,” she says, but added that she wants to give police time to investigate.

According to a Los Vegas Metropolitan Police Department statement, Las Vegas Police responded to a call at 5:15 am on February 23 of multiple shots being fired from a parking lot. Officers determined that the suspect arrived on foot.

“As the suspect walked by the lounge, he pulled out a firearm and shot into the business without warning,” the statement says. “There were multiple people inside the business during the incident but no one saw the suspect. The suspect ran from the scene prior to officers’ arrival.”

Initial media reports suggested that there multiple victims from the incident. Hallie says Haywood was the only person injured. Police statements also confirm just one injury.

In video footage released by police, an individual is seen walking up the street in white pants and a long brown coat, theirface largely obscured. The footage does not show shooting, but what appears to be surveillance possibly prior to the incident. Police have also released photos.

The Las Vegas Lounge is open 24 hours and has continued operation, says Hallie.

“We appreciate everyone’s support,” Hallie tells INTO. “We’re still here. Twenty years and nothing like this has happened. It’s big statement on where we are in the world right now that someone could very easily acquire a firearm.”