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Male equivalent of Director's Couch
Mon Oct 23, 2017 9:59pm

There are many factors that led to LVC's "decline" in "Fame"...too many to detail in this post, alas, Maggs! ;P

As for the "Male Equivalent" of the Casting Couch (not limited to Directors: other "Crew", including Producers, and especially, Studio Execs -- vs people who are involved "on the ground" of making a specific film -- were the Decision Makers as to who got to appear in a film, and they abused their Power by extorting sexual favors from would-be actresses. Often without delivering the Goods, afterward.)...

I suspect you're asking due to the Harvey Weinstein "revelations" of late. (It's just the tip-tip-Tip o' the Iceberg, and NOT limited to wHorleyWood, as I'm sure you and any woman knows...)

There are many factors involved in that answer, too. ;P But a coupla points, briefly...

The Gay "foreground" (vs Underground) operated freely in Classic wHorleyWood daze -- it was an Open Secret during Studio Days, who was Gay and who wasn't (George Cukor, James Whale, Cole Porter, Cary Grant, etc, etc)...and their Sexual Preference was very well protected by the various Studios' Publicity Departments. But, away from prying Tabloid Cameras, these fey dudes threw wild pool parties and other escapades with abandon.

It's fairly well documented, in these latter times, how Gay Crew and Studio Execs and Actors managed to "find each other", using various methods -- most of them covert.

In Lee's case, he clearly "gets it" when (gay) Josh Logan asks him to disrobe down to his skivvies, during auditions for LVC's big break, the touring company of the Broadway play, MISTER ROBERTS. (He recounts this multiple times, most vividly in the sole Johnny Carson/TONIGHT SHOW interview, below.)

So, I haven't properly Researched the idea (as this is the first time anyone's voiced the question in my presence), but from what I do know about Gay Hollywood (via decades Researching "Hollywood" in general, and stumbling upon such info)...

I'd suggest there is no Direct Parallel between the Casting Couch (males preying upon females) and Vice-Versa (males preying upon males, or even females preying upon males) --- altho there's a neat fictional twist on that idea in the latest season of RAY DONOVAN, as Susan Sarandon plays the head of a Studio, and uses her financial-etc Power in various ways, including flipping the traditional Casting Couch concept on it's head. ;)

Hope that helps, Maggie...??


  • That may well be the case...Maggie, Mon Oct 23 9:41am
    ... plus some adittional insecurity as you never know how long fame lasts and whether you will manage to keep up your lifestyle (or eating and heating, as a matter of fact) for the years to come. And ... more
    • Male equivalent of Director's Couch — DCG, Mon Oct 23 9:59pm
      • Ah, yes...Maggie, Wed Oct 25 3:56am
        Well, the remarks about decline in fame were not coined on LVC but meant as a contribution to the discussion of high sucide rates in the business. Hmmm, the casting couch, yes, indeed, that was... more
        • Beyond the Casting CouchDCG, Wed Oct 25 2:57pm
          Sorry, Maggs --- I wrote my reply in bits, as I had time or needed a break from work, over several, by the time I finished the Reply from some short notes I took after reading your post... more
          • No worries!Maggie, Wed Oct 25 11:41pm
            You raised interesting points. Yes, LVC had his share of career slumps, and no, they were noch mono-causal, things rarely are. I'm also curious how the Weinstein scandal will influence public opinion ... more
            • One of the reasons I started to research LVC's life and career was to answer the question some of our fellow TBn members have also raised at various times: "Why wasn't Lee Van Cleef more successful?" ... more
              • I am surprised...Maggie, Sat Oct 28 2:09pm
                ... to read that fans thought he wasn't successful. There are many ways to measure success and money and limelights are not the only one. Many great artists gained fame (and would have become super... more
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