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Best LGBT Movie Characters of 2013

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If BEHIND THE CANDELABRA can't even find a distributor...

BY NATHANIEL ROGERS 

Have you properly reflected on the year that was as we switch numbers? I tend to make a whole month of it and haven't quite done the difficult work of trimming down my favorite 17 or so movies into that small "top ten list" box yet, so let's concentrate on movie characters for our annual tradition:

TEN BEST LGBT MOVIE CHARACTERS OF THE YEAR
*this list contains some spoilers*

Previous Years: 20122011, 2010

Queer cinema is having a rough where-to-now period. After Brokeback Mountain, an inarguable hit with nearly $200 million in worldwide box office eight long years ago, we had reason to hope that we were entering a new golden age of LGBT awareness, a true place at the table. And we were, of course -- gay marriage in Utah? Wow! -- just not onscreen. When Oscar famously denied Brokeback its rightful win who knew that it would prove such an ill omen for queer movies? Almost immediately afterwards, gay mainstream filmmaking fell into swift decline. The contributing factors are complicated and well-theorized about but it's led to a dearth of gay films in movie theaters -- you know you're in trouble when no one wants to distribute Steven Soderbergh's Liberace biopic BEHIND THE CANDELABRA (reviewed) which came with easy marketing hooks and major stars.

Screen shot 2013-12-31 at 6.01.16 PMWhile complex gay characters get good play on TV, mainstream movies are a weirder place for gays. Consider Catherine Zeta Jones's evil lesbian psychiatrist in Steven Soderbergh's Side Effects, who would have provided a juicy clip for The Celluloid Closet (1995) had she appeared in an older movie, or disposable characters like the butler The Wolf of Wall Street whose purpose in the movie seems to be... what exactly? The (comic) gaybashing adds nothing to the film.

Special Mention: I'm dedicating this list to two movies I missed that friends have sworn by. The acclaimed Cuban feature UNA NOCHE, currently available for instant streaming on Netflix, has a gay subplot I've only heard good things about and my friend Glenn swears by Xavier Dolan's LAURENCE ANYWAYS, a three hour epic about a transgendered woman born "Laurence" (delicious Frenchman Melvil Poupaud) and her girlfriend "Fred" (Suzanne Clement). My apologies also to sadfaced YOSSI (Ohad Knoller) but the Yossi & Jagger (2002) magic just wasn't there in his titular sequel.

 THE LIST IS AFTER THE JUMP...

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Daniel Radcliffe Has His Butt Played Like a Drum: VIDEO

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Here's a little warm-up for the Kill Your Darlings sex scene.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Daniel Radcliffe on the Physical Pain of Gay Sex and the Heartbreaking Task of Finding Yourself: VIDEO

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Daniel Radcliffe gives a great interview to Flaunt about Kill Your Darlings, in which he plays beat poet Allen Ginsberg.

Says Radcliffe about playing gay:

“I don’t think there’s any difference between how one falls in love. People express love differently, person to person, but it’s not gender or sexuality related. The only difference it made was obviously the actual sex scene, of course…”

...I was talked through it by the director. He would be telling me what I would be feeling in each take. Basically, gay sex, especially for the first time, is really f**king painful. And [Krokidas] said that he had never seen that portrayed accurately on film before. He wanted it to look like an authentic loss of virginity. The transformative thing about the role wasn’t playing such a famous character or playing a character that had such a huge influence on society. It was more of trying to find your voice, and finding out who you are. It’s usually an awful and very painful journey, and it has to be—it involves getting heartbroken or failing at something that you want to succeed at. Those are important things to go through, and that was the thing that attracted me to the part.”

Watch a bonus short film featuring Radcliffe called "Wait", shot in 8 minutes by Joe Connor, AFTER THE JUMP...

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New Clip of Daniel Radcliffe as Beat Poet Allen Ginsberg in 'Kill Your Darlings' - VIDEO

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In a newly released clip for John Krokidas's Kill Your Darlings, beat poet Allen Ginsberg (played by Daniel Radcliffe) and Lucien Carr (played by Dane DeHaan) meet for what appears to be the first time. Still no word on when a clip of Radcliffe's much-talked-about gay sex scene will surface though.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

The film is scheduled to release on October 18 and stars Daniel Radcliffe, Dane DeHaan, Ben Foster, Michael C. Hall, and Elizabeth Olsen.

Check out the full trailer HERE.

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Daniel Radcliffe Discusses 'Kill Your Darlings', Gay Sex Scene: VIDEO

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Daniel Radcliffe stopped by the Today show to discuss his upcoming role in Kill Your Darlings, in which he plays beat poet Allen Ginsberg. The film also features his first gay sex scene, and Radcliffe says he's "not surprised" that people are excited about it.

Says Radcliffe: ""I would be a very stupid person if I didn't expect some reaction to that...I don't really mind what reasons people go in to see the film if they're slightly salacious or whatever. Ultimately they're going to go in and see a really compelling drama."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Daniel Radcliffe Laughs at Freddie Mercury Casting Rumors

RadcliffeYes, all the claims being made by the UK's Daily Star tabloid about Daniel Radcliffe playing Freddie Mercury were just that - claims.

Says Radcliffe:

"There is no truth to it at all,. It's one of those very, very funny things: it came out of a story in the Daily Star and then you see newspapers like The Guardian using The Star as their source, and it grows and grows [until] it's 'Dan Radcliffe is playing Freddie Mercury!', which I was never going to do. Everyone on the internet who I presume is saying I'm totally wrong for that part is correct. I AM completely wrong for that part!"


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