Tab Hunter Talks About His Documentary And LGBT Issues (AUDIO)

I talked with screen legend and LGBT Icon Tab Hunter about Tab Hunter Confidential the fabulous documentary that's now available on FilmRise in Blu-Ray and DVD. This fascinating film is a must-see for our LGBT community, allies and beyond. In this intimate stylized documentary Tab narrates the true story of what it was like to spend his Hollywood years being gay in a precarious closet that repeatedly threatened to implode and possibly destroy him. Throughout the 1950s Hunter reigned as Hollywood's ultimate heartthrob in dozens of films and in the pages of countless magazines. Tab's astonishing looks and golden-boy sex appeal drove his fans to screaming, delirious frenzy, solidifying him as the prototype for all young matinee idols to come. I talked to Tab about this documentary depicting his stellar career as he shared personal inspirational stories, lifelong survival philosophies and his spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what advise he would give LGBT youth dealing with bullying Hunter stated:

I'm not a good one on advise, but I have to tell you a story that's really interesting. Years ago I was doing a television show with Geraldine Page who was a brilliant actress and I said 'God you know Gerry, the press they love you and they just hate my guts. They're just despicable to me and I feel terrible about this.' She grabbed hold of my arm and said 'Remember this Tab. If people don't like you that's their bad taste.' I thought Whoa, that's powerful. I thought, I'm going to apply that to my life and furthermore pass that along to every person I know particularly young people because they don't have the support and guidance while they're growing up. A lot of parents out there are very, 'I want to be your friend'. That's bullshit. You know, they're parents be parents. There's a yes and a no. There's a right and a wrong. You have to have it and I was very fortunate to have a strong but religious German mother and that was important and I think we need boundaries in our lives. Today there doesn't seem to be a lot of boundaries. But young people have to go forward as the best that they can and give a lot of thought to their development mentally, physically and spiritually.

Tab Hunter has appeared in over 40 films. His breakout role in 1951 at age nineteen was with Samuel Goldwyn Studios in The Lawless. His Southern California good looks catapulted him to overnight matinee idol stardom and he enjoyed a robust film career throughout the 1950's and 60's. The 1970's started out strong including a leading role in John Huston's The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean starring Paul Newman but work began to wane in the later 70's. A call from filmmaker and fan John Waters catapulted Hunter back into the limelight and took him into a new, freer direction with the now cult classic comedy Polyester in 1981 starring the infamous drag icon Divine. When his partner Allan Glaser saw Jeffrey Schwarz's documentary I am Divine he hired Schwarz to do this brilliant documentary Tab Hunter Confidential based on his bestselling autobiography. Punctuating Tab's on-screen presence are rare film clips and provocative interviews with friends and co-stars including John Waters, Clint Eastwood, George Takei, Debbie Reynolds, Robert Wagner, Portia de Rossi, Noah Wyle, Connie Stevens, Robert Osborne and more. However, most importantly, Tab the man himself talks frankly about being a survivor of the Hollywood rollercoaster.
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