And the Awards Go To...

BY Advocate Contributors

February 13 2012 4:00 AM ET

PEDRO ALMODOVAR X390 (GETTY) | ADVOCATE.COM

 Dustin Lance Black
Screenwriter for J. Edgar 

 Already an Academy Award-winner for his screenplay about another gay man (2008's Milk), Black has meticulously researched the often-despised FBI director J. Edgar Hoover. Writing about such a complicated man was obviously a challenge to the talented 37-year-old. Biographers have speculated on Hoover's relationship with Clyde Tolson, his right-hand man, and suggested Hoover was a closet cross-dresser. As portrayed by Leonardo DiCaprio in the Clint Eastwood-directed film, Hoover emerges as a somewhat sympathetic character, capable of great cruelty yet tortured by his affection for Tolson, played by Armie Hammer. Black says his goal was to understand the heart of a monster, telling The Advocate, "If we continue to demonize him, then we learn nothing."

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