CELLULOID CLOSET week continues with the 1981 comedy starring George Hamilton as Zorro and Zorro's gay twin.
Starring a cast of peasants!
This week we inducted Vito Russo into the Badass Hall of Fame. Russo was a gay rights and AIDS activist and a film historian whose life work was published as a book called Celluloid Closet that details the history of homosexuality in film. Until very recently (and arguably still), gay people in movies were all victims, villains or clowns. It's pretty easy to tell what box Gay Zorro falls into, no?
In Peter Medak's 1981 comedy Zorro: The Gay Blade, George Hamilton plays Zorro and Zorro's gay brother Ramon (who operates under the nom de guerre Bunny Wigglesworth for some fucking reason). Despite the fact that he's called the Gay Blade, Ramon uses a whip instead of sword, because that's sexier, and also he wears lots of funny hats and frilly cloaks. I thought Zorro was gay enough on his own without gaying him up in tassels and thigh-high boots, but I guess Twentieth Century Fox thought favorably contrasting Straight Zorro with Gay Zorro would give Straight Zorro some hetero cred. I remain skeptical.
Also, get a load of this poster. George Hamilton's gay face is terrifying. You guys. He was nominated for a Golden Globe for this.