Ellen Barkin: I Am Kind of a Butch Girl
BY Jeremy Kinser
November 18 2011 6:16 PM ET
Actress Ellen Barkin asks questions about the LGBT acronym and addresses her androgynous appeal while speaking with veteran writer Kevin Sessums.
During their interview to promote her acclaimed new film, Another Happy Day, Barkin discusses her romantic relationship with the film's director, Sam Levinson, who is 21 years her junior. Sessums, who is gay, jokes that Levinson, whom both consider androgynous, might be gay as well. Sessums immediately apologizes, which leads Barkin to inquire about the LGBT acronym.
"What year did gay get split into the sexes?" Barkin asks. "When I was young, gay was gay .. .I understand the blurry lines between the B and the T. What year did the lesbians decide they weren’t in the gay party?"
Sessums suggests that Levinson's androgyny and his female outlook provide a way for Barkin to get in touch with her own latent lesbianism.
"I don’t think I have to get in touch with any of those aspects of my personality or character," Barkin says. "I think it’s been done. That’s one of the fun things about doing this role — she was so much more feminine than I. I am kind of a butch girl, if you really think about it."
In June, Barkin won a Tony award for her performance in the LGBT-themed play The Normal Heart.