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Angela Lansbury, gay icon


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It doesn't hurt to go a bit deeper sometimes. LOL But I appreciate the attempt to refocus on her films. There are a few that never air on TCM, like the one she did in the mid-60s with Kim Novak and George Sanders.

I don't mind the deep end of the pool, provided it's not dirty. To paraphrase Ann Dettrey from Gentleman's Agreement (1947).

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I was reading up on Lansbury for a Golden Age roll call post I was writing (to appear later this week). There was a lot about her background and early days in show biz that was new to me. A common theme in her life, then and later on, seems to have been her connection with the gay male subculture.

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Her first professional job as an entertainer found her singing tunes in Canada that were written by Noel Coward. Then when she first arrived in Hollywood she and her mother had a lot of gay artist friends-- including writer John Van Druten who wrote the screenplay for MGM's GASLIGHT and helped Angela get cast in the picture. Next, she appeared with Hurd Hatfield in the studio's version of THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY, based on Oscar Wilde's story. Her costar was gay actor Hurd Hatfield, with whom she stayed close over the years.

 

A short time later, Angela married a homosexual, actor Richard Cromwell. Of course, the marriage didn't last but they remained lifelong friends.

 

In the 60s, Angela became a musical theater star with her performance as Mame. This was followed in the 70s by her version of Gypsy. During these years she developed a huge gay following.

 

Obviously, she has fans from all walks of life and seems to appeal to many different types of audiences. But it seems like there is a recurring theme in her life that involves professional associations with gay men and entertainment that endears her to gay men.

 

Thoughts..?

 

All I'll say is when you're a woman in show business, you have nonstop professional associations with gay men.

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