Film/Arts/Satire*
(*homocinematically inclined)

Friday, November 30, 2007

Out in Film: Alan Cumming

Idol worship: Alan Cumming, actor/puckish provocateur.
- What he's known for: A string of memorably mischievous characters on stage and screen.
- When did we first notice him: The mid-90's were the Cumming years, with his sit-up-and-take-notice roles in Circle of Friends, GoldenEye, Emma and Romy and Michele's High School Reunion.
- Other choice roles: The Great Gazoo in The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas; evil kiddie show host Fegan Floop in the Spy Kids movies; the blue-skinned, teleporting mutant Nightcrawler in X2: X-Men United.
- Renaissance man: Co-wrote, co-directed, co-produced and co-starred in the movie The Anniversary Party with Jennifer Jason Leigh.
- Awards on his mantel: A Tony Award (among many others) for his enigmatic Emcee in Cabaret; the Vito Russo Award from GLAAD.
- What else has he done: More musicals with Annie and Reefer Madness on TV and Threepenny Opera on Broadway; several guest spots on TV faves Frasier, Sex and the City and The L Word; voices Chuck on Rick & Steve, the Happiest Gay Couple in All the World.
- Side jobs: Author of the novel Tommy's Tale;creator of his own fragrance, appropriately named "Cumming".
- Bet you didn't know: Originally aspired to be a veterinarian; got his first big break on a Scottish soap opera.
- Yes, it's true: Married his partner, artist Grant Shaffer, earlier this year in London; he is probably the only actor to have worked with both Stanley Kubrick and The Spice Girls.
- Nickname: "Uppin Cumming", appropriately.
- Can we quote you on that: "The fact that somebody like me is a sex symbol, it's kind of good I think, because it's not like I'm a big muscle man or any of those things that normally are treated as sex symbols. It's quite a good kind of thing for skinny people."
- And another thing: "I'm not sure if you could say what I did in Cabaret was dancing. I thought of it more as rubbing my genitals to a beat."
- Where you can learn more: In his autobiography, appropriately titled Cumming Soon.
- Where we can see him next: Taking on two fantastic literary characters and one historical one: first, he reimagines the Scarecrow in the freaky Wizard of Oz mini-series Tin Man, airing on the Sci Fi Channel next week (check out the trailer here); then he'll be the Mad Hatter to Rebecca Romijn's Alice in a Wonderland update appropriately titled Hatter; and finally, will play Adolph Hitler in the animated comedy Jackboots on Whitehall.

Links via Imdb.com, YouTube.com, Amazon.com, CummingTheFragrance.com, SciFi.com and HollywoodReporter.com.

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