Tuesday, 10 July 2018

Pulling the Tab

“He had a face that was so handsome that it didn’t look real. He could have been a composite man created by God … or the devil!” - George Abbott, director of the musical Damn Yankees.
How sad. One of the sexiest stars to come out [excuse the phrase - he eventually did; but not until he published his memoirs in 2005] of the Henry Willson stable in the 50s [alongside the likes of Rock Hudson, Rory Calhoun, Troy Donahue and Robert Wagner], the lovely Tab Hunter has died, a few days short of his 87th birthday.

After the flurry of "dreamboat" roles that made his name, his star declined until the 1980s - when a certain John Waters secured him a role starring opposite none other than Divine in Polyester. After that, his "camp cult icon" status was assured... His aforementioned autobiography Tab Hunter Confidential [its title itself a reference to the Hollywood gossip-rag that attempted to expose his sexuality at the height of his career; a libel lawsuit later, he survived the scandal - all the while maintaining a real-life relationship with Antony Perkins] was even made into a film in its own right by his own long-term partner (and director of Tab's other Divine collaboration, Lust in the Dust) Allan Glaser.

By all accounts a genuinely lovely man, he will be missed for all that - but by heavens, he truly was gorgeous!

RIP Tab Hunter (born Arthur Gelien, 11th July 1931 - 9th July 2018).

Read my previous blog about Tab Hunter.


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