Kit Steinkellner
May 18, 2015 9:40 am

This week, Cate Blanchett’s film, Carol, premiered at Cannes. The movie, which is getting rave reviews, is based on the Patricia Highsmith novel “The Price of Salt,” and follows the story of two women in love.

In an interview with Variety about the film, Blanchett was asked if this was her first turn as a lesbian. The publication reported that Blanchett responded by smiling and “coyly” asking “On film — or in real life?” When the reporter “pressed for details about whether she’s had past relationships with women” Blanchett responded “Yes, many times” and didn’t “elaborate.”

If you feel weird about that line of questioning, I’m with you. A person’s sexuality can be a sensitive topic and it really is up to an individual how much or how little they want to share about that aspect of their lives. Of course, the story ended up blowing up.

Then yesterday, as Buzzfeed reports,  Blanchett clarified her statement at a press event:

“For memory, the conversation ran ‘Have you had relationships with women?’ and I said ‘Yes, many times,'” Blanchett explained. “If you meant ‘Have I had sexual relationships with women?” the answer is NO. But that obviously didn’t make it to print. Not really. But in 2015 the point should be WHO CARES?”

(For the record, the Variety writer has tweeted that his reporting was not fudged. He also wrote that Carol will likely land Blanchett her seventh Oscar nod.)

But Blanchett’s point, it seems, is that her sexuality doesn’t exclusively define her, and her preferences—no matter what they are—shouldn’t raise eyebrows or be foisted into the public domain if she’s not down with that. And she’s still raising awareness about the injustices people face for being non-heterosexual. She went on to address the insanity of the fact that homosexuality is still illegal in some countries, stating, “We’re living in deeply conservative times and if we think otherwise we’re being very foolish.”

That’s so true, and it’s something that needs to change.

Good job saying what everyone needs to hear, Cate. You are a badass onscreen, a badass offscreen, you’re basically just always a badass.

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