Have you ever fallen for a gay man?
And wanted to have sex with him? Just Tom Ford. [Laughs] When I was a freshman in college in 1979, there was this hot gay guy that I used to make out with in the hallways of the dorm. My idea about gay was very foggy at the time. He was the first out gay person I’d ever met and he was kissing me, so I didn’t know what was happening.
Did you ever experiment with women?
Honestly, it was mostly girls kind of sitting around and telling each other dirty stories. There was a lot of that, actually, but that’s about it.
You’ve worked with a number of notable gay directors before Tom Ford. Are you drawn to their sensibility or vice versa?
Well, there’s Tom Kalin, Todd Haynes, Gus Van Sant... Although I’ve also made 40-something films, so you have to think, Well, if 10 percent of the population is gay... Sexuality has never come into the equation for me, because I’m only interested in the scripts and the stories. I’ve been lucky enough to get some great ones, and a lot of them have come from gay men and women.
Your sexually ambiguous roles in The Hours, Psycho, and the upcoming Chloe aside, you've also played some outright lesbians, most recently in The Private Lives of Pippa Lee and next in The Kids Are All Right. Is a different sexual inclination from your own ever part of what draws you to a character?
Not necessarily sexual inclination but certainly something different temperament-wise. I was very attracted to playing Kat in Pippa Lee because she’s very tough and inscrutable.
Not because of Kat’s unfortunate lesbian haircut?
My mullet? I chose that mullet, man! It was a half-wig. I was going for a Jane Fonda in Klute thing. In The Kids Are All Right the hair is just like my own hair — long and plain.