Just watched "Friendly Persuasion" this afternoon. Anthony Perkins was very good in it (nominated for an Oscar). I was reminded how handsome he was in prime. He had relationships with Tab Hunter, Paul Newman
Rock Hudson, Troy Donahue, Rudolf Nureyev, Paul Newman, and James Dean. That makes for some fun imaging...................
Tony Perkins certainly was handsome, but even before "Psycho" there was something [italic]serial-killerish[/italic] in those eyes. He also tended to play internally conflicted, slightly off-kilter characters which added to the creepiness.
yep, R12, looks like flirting to me. The boys were enjoying each other.
Perkins ruined his career by embracing Norman Bates.
He was actually one of my first crushes when I was a kid. he also had a long term affair with Sondheim.
Do you guys remember the bespectacled male nerd in "Legally Blonde", the one assigned to Elle's study group? That's his son.
I don't think Norman Bates ruined his career. He just made some bad choices after that film. Playing an iconic villain is not necessarily a death sentence on a career. Hannibal Lector didn't ruin Anthony Hopkins's career.
I think perkins had a lot of issues with his personal life that filtered over into his career. He was a troubled soul in many ways.
He was fairly good-looking when young, and was good in puppy-eyed male ingenue roles. He also had a nice slim, muscular body (see link).
I recommend the 1950s film "Fear Strikes Out", probably his best pre-Psycho performance. He plays a baseball player who's driven to a breakdown by his horrible demanding father (Karl Malden). He's very likeable, and doesn't overplay the underlying stress and anger.
You might be right R17. Mahogany comes to mind but it's just one in a long line of clunkers he did. I suspect he was held back by either homophobia or bizarre behavior on his own part.
He was gay and hard to work with and everyone knew it. This prevented him from going anywhere because no studio or producer wanted to put an investment on such a gamble.
AFter Psycho he went off to Europe to do some films hardly seen now, with those Europea ladies - with Ingrid Bergman in Goodbye Again, Melina Mercouri in Phaedra, Sophia Loren again in Five Miles To Midnight (they had previously done Desire Under The Elms in '58), Orson Welles' The Trial with Jeanne Moreau and Romy Schneider, and Chabrol's Champagne Murders, and there was a comedy with Bardot as well, so he was still quite well regarded in film circles.
But as Pauline Kael said: how could you believe Melina Mercouri would leave Raf Vallone for Tony Perkins?!
Tony seems to have had a mean streak too - Tab Hunter had done the tv play of Fear Strikes Out, but Tony went behind his back and campaigned for the movie version. The boys often double dated with the likes of Natalie Wood.
I think everyone was surprised when he finally married Marisa Berenson's sister (who was on one of those airplanes which hit the World Trade Centre in 2001) and had 2 sons ... did Aids get him finally ?
He was terrific in Psycho, which I saw again recently and enjoyed, but I had no interest in any of its sequels he did.
I thought Troy Donahue was the straight one of those '50s guys ? and Perkins and Newman, really ? - he was in one of Paul & Joanne's later films, WUSA, but it was a small part.
What a ridiculous thing to say r20 - you obviously have no idea how busy Perkins was in his heyday, all those films from mid-50s to mid-60s. Just check his resume on IMDB.
I love "Goodbye Again" - its a great sudser where Ingrid is wonderful and Jessie Royce Landis is amusing as Tony's mother. Tony and Ingrid driving around Paris in 1961, whats not to love.
How could you believe Ingrid Bergman would leave Yves Montand for Tony Perkins ?
According to Tab's book he and Tony were an item for several years, it must have been quite common knowledge at the time but of course the fan magazines playing everything straight with all their hot dates etc, just like people do now (Renner etc ...)
I had forgotten he had been in so many good films - and he had a record album out too, Tab too had a pop career.
'Green Mansions' with Audrey was terrible, but 'Tall Story', Jane Fonda's first, was good - and 'On The Beach', that first version of Hello Dolly: 'The Matchmaker', and 'The Sea Wall' in '58 was marvellous too, and his first film Cukor's 'The Actress' in 1963 with Jean Simmons as the young Ruth Gordon ! 'Pretty Poison' is a terrific late 60s film, and of course 'Murder on the Orient Express', 'Remember My Name' and others. He certainly worked, 66 titles in all.
OOps,The Actress was 1953.
Tuesday Weld and Tony are terrific in Pretty Poison.
Green Mansions in 1959 has to be Audrey's worst film, and a flop - its the only one of hers never revived now - but thats not Tony's fault, it was set up by her husband Mel Ferrer. Starring with Audrey Hepburn then was certainly a coup.
He certainly worked with the big names of his time: Audrey H, Bergman, Loren twice, both Fondas, McLaine, the Newmans etc and part of the all-star Orient Express. Wasnt he a friend of Sondheim's too and helped devise The Last of Sheila ?
He was one of those 'mos who insisted he got the AIDS from shooting up
Berry made him go straight.
Wonder what his sons are like? Are they actors too ?
I never saw Desire Under The Elms until a while ago, its an absolute hoot now - with Burl Ives screamingly awful as the family patriarch - but he was so good the same year as Big Daddy.
I've never heard of Troy Donahue fooling around with guys? Is that just heresay or wishful thinking or is there any evidence ?
[quote]How could you believe Ingrid Bergman would leave Yves Montand for Tony Perkins ?
It's been a while since I've seen this, but IIRC, Yves is a chaser and more or less ignores her, which is why she takes up with Tony. So the real question is, why would any man (or woman for that matter) ignore Ingrid Bergman?
Read R16, R35.
Troy was a plank of wood compared to Tony - I saw his A Summer Place and Rome Adventure over the weekend, he had no range as an actor whatsoever and wasn't that good-looking, but he filled out those shorts nicely. I will have to brace myself to endure Parrish and Susan Slade, camp treats though they are.
Tony was a truly unique persona in 1950s films, that's what made him so special.
His All-American collegiate boyishness was infused with a mysterious shyness and decidedly neurotic quality that was a fascinating antidote to post-WWII Eisenhower America values, ironically personified by Tab Hunter.
It's obviously why Hitchcock cast him in Psycho.
Though there were other neurotic personas in Hollywood, Clift, Brando, Dean....no one was quite like Tony in the 1950s.
No she didn't, R34. Like I said already, I was the one who did that. Get it right, bitch.
Perkins was the eternal juvenile. Even without Psycho, that gave him a slightly creepy quality as he aged out of juvenile leads.
My Mummy's name was Gogo and my birth name was Berinthia. C'est vrai! And, I gave Tony two sons, Osgood and Elvis. C'ets vrai aussi!
I love his son Elvis's music, btw. He looks quite a bit like his father. Sad all around for the guy. Father dies with HIV and mother dies on a plane that crashes into the World Trade Center. He and his brother Oz weren't left with much, I've heard.
How old were the boys when they lost their mother? They must have been reasonably well off. ...
Perkins came after James Dean - Brando & Clift were the heavyweights - but Tony caught that juvenile thing nicely, as Elvis and Tab and temporarily Troy were the teen favourites. He (Perkins) had a longer better career than Tab.
Perkins was nice looking but he was too slender to be "a Hunk."
As his first movie The Actress was made in 1953 then he was around the same time as Dean - if Dean had lived beyond 1955 would Perkins have got all those late 50s opportunities ?
Wonder if Jimmy, Tony & Tab had a 3-way ... only Tab can tell and his book was curiously coy.
There are photos of Tab & Dean together, so at least those 2 could have ...
[quote]his overt sexual perversion,
Fuck you, homophobic cunt.
Call me crazy but I find the 1950s Perkins far hotter and more interesting than James Dean.
I never thought to compare them until this thread but I wonder if they went up for any of the same roles. I can certainly see Tony in East of Eden and Rebel.. if not Giant.
He was big time into watersports. People would often talk about seeing Tony Perkins in WeHo with a yellow hanky in his back pocket.
Yes I recall hearing that rumoour too, r53.
If Dean had lived a lot of those 50s careers would be a lot different, Newman for a start would not have got several of his early roles, and Perkins may not have either. But it is pointless speculating now.
Sophia Loren made 2 films with him, and also one with Tab (the little seen Lumet 'That Kind of Woman' in '59) - I wonder if she twigged they were gay or even knew each other ?
Sophia's gaydar was definitely limited.
Why isn't anyone discussing my magic pussy? Just ask Joan Rivers what happens when people cross me. Or my maid.
"that coupled with his overt sexual perversion"
R51, I was going to ask R5 what that perversion was?
Perhaps R5 is one of those gay Repubs?
I loved his films and thought he was good looking until middle age hit him and he shaved his hair for Equas or whatever play he was doing on Broadway.
Did he think if he got married he would be able to work in Hollywood again? I really did think he ruined his career by making Psycho sequels but I guess he had to make a living?
Yes, he died of AIDs.
R21: Yes, Tony Perkins tried again to best Tab Hunter by doing "Damn Yankees" at a few key summer stock theaters in the late 1950s
You bitches have about five minutes to start making this thread about ME or I'm contacting my attorneys!
Your routine is tiresome, r61. Give it a rest.
Well, she was his first woman...so I'll give her some praise.
As he got older, his his range narrowed significantly. He WAS BZ in "Play it as it Lays" and that pretty much cut him out of the vast majority of parts for middle-aged men.
Great long interview with Perkins. Part one at the link. He's very perceptive.
Has anyone reached out to Elvis and Oz to let them know how hot their father was considered to be?
I didn't see this mentioned up thread: read his biography SPLIT IMAGE (or something similar -- I didn't confirm the title). It was rather well done re chronicling his entire life and quite gossipy as well. Perkins seemed to be a mess from an early age, and came across as being sexually impulsive, preoccupied, somewhat indiscriminate, and highly conflicted.
Tony even brought that neurotic nature to lighter roles, like Cornelius Hackl in The Matchmaker and the college basketball player Tall Story with Jane Fonda. I fell in love with him in those films.
I believe he had a mother who over powered him...his father was an actor before him.
The biography I read mentioned a blond twink he was seeing in the early 1970s, of whom Perkins had taken tied-up/S&M pics. Perhaps Perkins and Sondheim tag teamed other guys together?
I may not have all the facts straight here, but in the 1960s, I believe Tony came under the strong influence of a German-American woman named Helen Merrill who was a photographer at the time. They shared a townhouse together in Chelsea.
Apparently, she came between Tony and a lot of his NY friends. Their relationship eventually broke up when Tony attempted heterosexuality and married.
She eventually became a big literary agent in NYC, representing many young important playwrghts and theater directors in the 1980s and 90s.
Anyone else have any info?
I remember her in the biog. But hadn't Perkins moved in with Grover Dale long before he met Berenson?
I'm a lesbian who had a Daddy crush on Tony Perkins when I was quite young back in the late 80s (obviously before I figured my own shit out). I was such a nostalgia nerd! I use to love going to the library and looking up the 50s era articles on him and reading the interviews. ALL THE CODE words they used to avoid the word "effeminate" and the crap stories they invented to pair him with all those older women.
It's sad to read those stories about so many closeted actors these days. Even his semi-coming out in 1982- admitting to homosexual affairs- was painted in the context of a 'recovered' sickness of the past. He even blamed it on Mom. Scripted to the tee. It was so tragic how much he must have hated himself in that context.
But I do believe Berry & kids represented a sense of stability and he loved his wife and kids. I had friends who were the exact same way. Gay/bi men didn't have any options when it came to self-perception. How could they picture themselves with a family unless they denied their homosexuality?
I really wonder what it would be like for him these days. If he didn't get HIV, would he have continued to live in the closet with his wife - or would they have divorced after the kids grew up and moved out? I'd like to think Berry would have moved on and Tony would have been outed eventually- if not come out himself. Today he'd be living with some boy toy up in the Hollywood Hills- reincarnating old horror movies and making a comeback in some David Lynch movie.
Elvis is a pretty damned good musician too. I think his elder brother, Oz, implied that that Elvis was kinda Angry at Tony for some time after his death. Ash Wednesday is an AMAZING song that incorporates so many feelings about both his mother's death on 9/11 and his father's death. Really amazing talent there.
That overpowering mother/ missing father crap is soooo textbook. I mean C'MON!
I believe Roddy McDowell and Richard Benjamin were at his death bed.
Does anyone know if he and Sondheim were getting along at the time of his death?
Yes, r72. They were living together when they met.
He wasn't a hunk. He was too twitchy to be a hunk.
And Dale continued to live downstairs from Perkins when he and Berenson started their married life, right?
What blog r72?
I forgot about the long Grover Dale relationship. Not sure where Helen fit in there? Friend or foe of Dale?
But didn't Dale marry Anita Morris around the same time that Tony married Berry?
I met Helen Merrill in the 80s. She was a character!
biog(raphy) not blog. I think you may well be right about Morris/Dale. Strange living situation if Morrid/Dale lived downstairs from Perkins/Berenson.
I don't recall there being any beef between Dale/Merrill. Perhaps she'd moved on or expanded her interests beyond Perkins by then.
Tony Perkins appeared in a hit Broadway show, "Look Homeward Angel," on Broadway in the 1950s.
His career was on a downward curve from the 1960s on. Indeed Tony was a hunk in the 1950s, hot enough to get Tab Hunter. Clearly, Tab was the more grounded person, too bad because Tony was a wonderful actor.
Tony was in several hit films, he just wasn't the leading man. I thought he was a beloved star for the older generation.
a couple (or so) of personal thoughts about Tony Perkins: 1) I fell in lust with him in "Friendly Persuasion" - wanted to take him in my arms and comfort him during his issues with moral conflicts; 2) he rekindled the lust when he sang "Moon Light Swim - let's go on a...)" on some 50's tv variety show- probably Ed Sullivan but not certain about that -he wore a light colored crew-neck sweater that accentuated his very broad shoulders and his dark features - he was the first of many "swimmer-type bodies" that I fell for; 3) a frat brother at KU (who was the son of an old and wealthy Kansas city family; had spent the summer in LA) told that Tony was able to "tie his dick into a knot"- claimed to have seen it - I have absolutely no idea if that was accurate, but it certainly contributed to my masturbation fantasies for a number of years. Too bad that Tony was born like 30 years too soon- I think he led a pretty tortured existence from what I gleaned from the press and rumors. Oh, those puppy-dog eyes!!! Loved Phaedra, loved him driving around Paris in that little MG(?). Thanks for all the memories kindled by this thread.
Also from KC
No, not wade williams - can't remember his name, but family owned an old-line stationery company in KC (maybe Carter-Hall?). Kind of attractive in his way, pretty funny, very campy - gay, I assume, but really can not verify that; clearly remember the story - almost exact time and place it so seared my fertile little mind!
I read from wiki that he had sex with a woman for the first time when he was 39 and pretty soon after that he got married. Why? Did he have some sort of mid-life crisis and decided that I must have a family right now or what.
Even after his marriage he was still a strange little kinkster. I heard a guy tell a story of being over at Perkins' house while his wife Berry was in the other room. Perkins was telling the guy (who was his ex) what he wanted him to do with him, and to him, rough trade kind of stuff. The guy just sat there and said, "Whatever you want Norman."
If he were alive today, he'd be the guy on Craigslist who says "I'll leave my front door open, I'll be in the bedroom, you just come in and do what you want and leave."
You gave him my pink shirt? You gave a complete stranger my pink shirt? That shirt was a Christmas present from you! I treasured that shirt, I loved that shirt! My collar had grown a full size from weightlifting, you saw that my arms had grown, you saw that my neck had grown and you bought me that shirt for my new body! I loved that shirt! My first shirt for my new body and you gave that shirt away? I can't believe you! I hate this life and I hate you!
His first woman was Pam from Dallas. I believe she thought she was doing him a favor...after that, I guess he thought he could "do" sex with a woman, even though it wasn't his preference.
watching Psycho this evening. I haven't seenit for a couple of years. Perkins really was a handsome man. There was both a darkness and an innocence about him that made him desirable. It is a shame he had so many issues about being gay.
Watching Psycho III right now. Very stylishly made. It's a shame he didn't have a bigger career as a director.
Although, as a gay man, I have a soft spot for Diana Scarwid inhaling every piece of scenery on the Universal lot.
the reviews of "Hitchcock" say James D'Arcy does an impresive job playing Perkins in the film.
I'm really looking forward to seeing that, R92. Hopefully it's better than the dreadful The Girl. Then again, I'm more interested in Psycho than The Birds anyway...
R18's gif is fucking hot. I knew he was handsome, but hoo boy.
I remember some home movie color footage that Roddy McDowell made at his Malibu beach house in the mid 60's (its on youtube) with lots of celebs hanging out at the house. Perkins is in some of them. In one shot, he gives a finger to the camera (which, I assume, was in Roddy's hands) and snarls a nasty look. It is an unpleasant moment, amid all the relaxed famous faces.
How about a link, R95? There are a lot of Tony Perkins clips on YouTube.
Perkins was part of the WeHo crowd in the late 70s-early 80s. He'd wear sunglasses and a yellow hanky in his back right pocket and his tee shirt in hi other pocket and hit the Gay Pride crowds every year.
I saw him do EQUUS on Broadway. I'm sure he was doing his co-star, Tom Hulce.
I liked him a lot in 'On the Beach' with Gregory Peck and Ava Gardner. What a peculiar and sad movie too.
Why do bisexuals with a strong preference for men get married to women? So gross.
Out of insecurity sugar, for what else?
Interesting facts about Anthony Perkins
. First heterosexual encounter was with Victoria Principal during the making of the movie The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean (1972).
. Stated in a 1983 interview with People magazine that he had turned down advances from Jane Fonda 25 years earlier.
. Was a fan of Elvis Presley, after whom he named his second son, Elvis Perkins.
. In 1984, he was arrested at London's Heathrow Airport for possession of eight grams of marijuana and three spots of LSD.
.Was a huge admirer of Orson Welles , and was even planning on writing a book about him, but aborted the project in fear of upsetting his idol. Welles later said that he would have loved the idea.