Matthew Goode: A Single Man's Goode Kisser
BY Brandon Voss
December 13 2009 1:10 PM ET
Handsome enough to romance Mandy Moore in Chasing Liberty and Scarlett Johansson in Match Point, Matthew Goode finally goes “full gay” — his own words — after queer turns in Brideshead Revisited and Watchmen. Third-billed in A Single Man, Tom Ford’s directorial debut, Goode appears as Jim, the deceased lover that Colin Firth’s college professor mourns in a series of intimate flashbacks. Before returning to his romantic comedy roots in Leap Year (opening January 8), the 31-year-old Brit gives us the goods on his costar’s snuggly body and sensitive kisses, plus that time they spent 45 minutes drinking gin in their underwear.
Advocate.com: You’ve worked on a number of films with gay themes. How conscious are you of your gay fan base?
Matthew Goode: I know it’s a typical fucking actor thing to say, but I’m not terribly conscious of any fan base, really. I’m not particularly known in my own country, so it’s not like I come out the door to see three lovely chaps wearing scarves and saying, “Good morning, Matthew, we love you!”
Tom Ford has said that A Single Man is “not a gay film.” As the actor kissing Colin Firth on-screen, how do you see it?
I kind of agree with him. He wasn’t making it as a political piece, and the theme of love and loss is fairly universal. Obviously you can’t escape the fact that these are men kissing, but what’s lovely about George’s remembrances of Jim is the fact that it’s not a sweaty clinch — which would’ve been fine, because I would’ve been very happy to snuggle up to the rug on Colin Firth’s chest. It was remembrances like sitting on the sofa reading books together, and there’s a beauty in the banality of those scenes that also speaks to their universality. You can call it a gay film, but what’s really nice it is that it shows the intimacy between two adult males as absolutely normal and exactly the same as heterosexual intimacy.
What’s your take on the controversial “de-gaying” by the Weinstein Co. of the film’s marketing campaign?
There are a lot of people around the world who are quite homophobic, so I suppose they’re just trying to not put people off and get as broad an audience in as possible. If it gets more people into the theater and therefore possibly changes their views, then that can only be a good thing.