Julianne Moore Addressed The Backlash Of Portraying A Queer Woman In "The Kids Are All Right"
"We need to give real representation to people."
You know Julianne Moore. The award-winning actor has starred in films such as Crazy, Stupid Love, The Hours, The Big Lebowski, and The Hunger Games, just to name a few.
Well, now, the 59-year-old is speaking out about her role in 2010's The Kids Are All Right.
The film follows Jules and Nic, a married lesbian couple raising two children born with the help of a sperm donor. The biological father unexpectedly becomes part of their lives, and completely disrupts the family's dynamic.
In an interview with Variety for the film's tenth anniversary, Julianne addressed criticism the movie faced for featuring two straight women portraying a queer couple.
"I’ve thought about that a lot. Here we were, in this movie about a queer family, and all of the principal actors were straight," she said. "I look back and go, 'Ouch. Wow.' I don’t know that we would do that today, I don’t know that we would be comfortable."
"We need to give real representation to people, but I’m grateful for all of the experiences that I’ve had as an actor because my job is to communicate a universality of experience to the world. The idea that, rather than othering people, we’re saying we’re all the same. Our humanity is shared."
She also said she "can see why people took issue with a lesbian character having an affair with her sperm donor," but that Jules’ character "was someone described as being very fluid, sexually and personally."
As for her opinion on the matter, Lisa Cholodenko, the film's writer and director, said, "I tend to err on the side of, 'It’s make-believe,' and it’s of the discretion of the director who’s the most compelling for that job. So, I don’t think it’s mutually exclusive."
"While I want to promote gay people representing gay people, trans people, all the rest, queer people — it’s also a commercial prospect. It’s all those things," she explained further.
She added that she could "feel [Julianne and Annette's] gayness," and that she had approached a gay person, specifically Jodie Foster, for the role:
When I cast Julianne and Annette, I really felt like, on the continuum of gayness, I could feel their gayness. It didn’t feel phony to me. I didn’t feel like I was putting somebody in an outfit and asking them to parade as something that was false. There was a conversation about going out to Jodie Foster. I think somebody even asked her. So there was a gay person who wasn’t interested in portraying a gay person.
Jodie Foster, who publicly spoke about her sexuality for the first time in 2007, said that she didn't remember the role being offered to her, later explaining that she was filming The Beaver and "wasn’t available in the time period of Kids Are All Right shoot.”