Here's Lookin' at You, Kidder

Since rising to stardom in the '70s, Margot Kidder has left her mark on some of American cinema's most iconic roles. Now making her home in Montana, she returns -- as a lesbian -- in On the Other Hand, Death.

BY Harrison Pierce

February 24 2009 1:00 AM ET

Margot Kidder soared to
movie stardom in the 1970s, a decade commonly regarded as one
of American cinema's finest. With her feisty wit and striking
looks, Kidder made a strong early impression in the horror
classics
Black Christmas

and
Sisters

before becoming a household name for her iconic performance as
Lois Lane in 1978's smash hit
Superman.

Since then she's appeared on the cover of
Rolling Stone,

hosted
Saturday Night Live,

and starred in numerous films and television series. It's been
quite a remarkable life for someone who grew up in Canadian
mining camps dreaming of becoming a movie star.

Although Kidder left
Hollywood a few years back for a calmer existence in rural
Montana, she still answers its call from time to time, making
memorable appearances in such hit television series as
Brothers & Sisters, Smallville,

and
The L Word,

Most recently, she received glowing reviews for her portrayal
of one half of a lesbian couple dealing with antigay prejudice
and a rising body count in here! TV's entertaining and
politically minded murder mystery
On the Other Hand, Death: A Donald Strachey Mystery,

debuting on DVD this month. Advocate.com recently spoke with
Kidder about the experience of "playing gay," her
illustrious career as both an actress and an activist,
and how "coming out of the closet" as someone struggling
with bipolar disorder changed her life.

Advocate.com: So, Margot, I understand you're living a nice, quiet life
out in Montana, far removed from the Hollywood circus ...
Margot Kidder:

I am indeed. It is the last best place.

Well, we're lucky to see you back on-screen when we can.
Tell me, what drew you to
On the Other Hand, Death: A Donald Strachey Mystery

?

Well, besides it being a job offer, which is always nice [
laughs

], it just seemed like a really great mystery, and I loved the
character. It passed the Kidder "Is it socially
acceptable?" test -- you know, does it treat women in the
proper way? And it ended up being one of the most joyous
experiences I've ever had because the guys who run here! and
the director, Ron Oliver, treated me like a princess, so I was
a very happy camper making this.

Now, is this your first time playing a gay character?

No, I've played a couple gay characters. In fact, I was a gay
character in a movie called
Never Met Picasso.

And what's to play anyway? Someone's sex life is, you know,
what happens behind bedroom doors -- the rest of it is you
playing a person. So I don't see it as a big leap.

Tags: film

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