Interviewing Kevin Spacey for the Daily Beast, the writer Kevin Sessums totally goes there, and flat out asks Spacey why he doesn’t publicly acknowledge his homosexuality. (Has Sessums been brushing up on his Carrie Fisher?) “We gay men have always proudly claimed you as a member of our tribe, and yet you don’t proudly claim us back. Why?” The conversation stays surprisingly civilized, with Spacey never explicitly admitting anything, but implicitly acknowledging everything, while defending his right to do and be whatever the hell he pleases, privately, thank you very much.
Here’s part of their conversation (with more here):
May I talk to you man-to-man? We can go off the record for this if you want.
You’re conducting this interview so you can stay on the record if you wish. I don’t mind.
Okay, but at any point you want to go off-the-record let me know … We gay men have always proudly claimed you as a member of our tribe, and yet you don’t proudly claim us back. Why?
Look, I might have lived in England for the last several years but I’m still an American citizen and I have not given up my right to privacy.
But that’s where we differ. I don’t think being gay is a private matter. Heterosexuals don’t consider their heterosexuality itself a private matter. I’m not asking you what goes on behind a locked door anymore than I would ask a heterosexual. I’m not asking if you’re a top or bottom. That’s none of my business.
…People have different reasons for the way they live their lives. You cannot put everyone’s reasons in the same box. It’s just a line I’ve never crossed and never will.
…I stopped being an actor after I left Juilliard because I couldn’t live a lie to enable myself to pretend. That was too much of a double whammy.
I don’t live a lie. You have to understand that people who choose not to discuss their personal lives are not living a lie. That is a presumption that people jump to.
There are lies of omission. But I have never heard that you are at all hypocritical in your daily life with your close friends and family…But you’ve been great to keep this all on the record. I appreciate that. That speaks to your innate integrity.
Look, at the end of the day people have to respect people’s differences. I am different than some people would like me to be. I just don’t buy into that the personal can be political. I just think that’s horseshit. No one’s personal life is in the public interest. It’s gossip, bottom line. End of story…
Kevin Spacey on Casino Jack [Daily Beast]