OUR LADY GUINEVERE – Limbo Magazine April/May 1999 (Canada)
Guinevere Turner Interview
Arriving at New York´s Park View restaurant in her roommate´s blue velvet suit, the unmistakable Guinevere Turner joined Limbo´s art director and publisher for some lunch and a lot of conversation.
Int:The first thing I want to ask you about is “The Taxi Cab Confessions”?
GT:Oh damnit, god damnit! (laughing) Okay, July `94´Go Fish´has been out for two month´s, and I´m in Crazy Nannies – a lesbian bar in New York – one of the only ones. Being in the bar at that time was like… well, you know. After about twelve scotches I decided it was time to go home, and I was getting a little melodramatic with myself in the cab thinking I can meet a cute attractive girl instead of everyone liking me for being in this movie. I get in the cab and there´s this woman who´s so butchy looking to me and she´s sitting outside of a dyke bar, at four in the morning and she´s looking like that I start to thinking she´s never even heard of `Go Fish´ or any of this, so I´m gonna pick her up. No one will believe me to this day, but that is so NOT in my nature. I give it my best shot. I remember her saying no, having a good laugh. I woke up the next morning called my friends, “God I can´t believe I tried to get a cab driver to come home with me last night.” Funny story ha-ha. Six months later, my friends walk into this bar where I´m hanging out looking like someone died, they asked if I remembered the taxi driver. I was like “Is she here? Is her girlfriend here? What´s happening?” It was on T.V. and it was going to be on 5 more times! I just curled up into a ball, now it´s a good story. I don´t remember signing the release, this woman has been on all the talk shows and she said that when I signed the release all I said was “Does this mean you´re not going to come home with me?” I actually wrote a short story for a British anthology about it.
Int:Between writing or acting which do you like better?
GT:They are really two different things. Writing is what I´ve always done. Writing is what I did when I was a kid. It´s what I´ve always imagined myself doing, but it´s so solitary, so lonely. You get so little attention. Acting, you go to a movie set, work with a hundred people for four weeks or eight weeks. It´s so much fun, so interesting:I love it.
Int:Are you comfortable with the title “Guinevere Turner – lesbian actress”?
GT:It´s great, I love people to know who I am, but maybe not a lesbian actress, because I think that makes it harder for me to just go and do whatever as ´just an actress´.
Int:Do you think you´d ever not be “out” just to get a part?
GT:I couldn´t really and sleep well at night. I would love to prove that I can play non-lesbians. Prove to myself and to the world that acting is acting. I did a film this time last year that is just getting finished where I´m not a lesbian, I´m straight. I am the exact opposite of Preaching (to the Perverted);I´m wide-eyed, so innocent.
Int:`Go Fish´took a really long time to film, starting and stopping… how long was the filming?
GT::A total of 45 or 50 days over a three year period. There were two weeks where we actually shot all day… mostly on weekends and nights, almost everyone had full time jobs, myself included. It was rough.
Int:What was your full time job?
GT:I was the assistant editor of a management consultant firm in Chicago. It was a full-on heels and stockings, get there at eight in the morning and work your ass off until 5:30 kind of job. That was great, because I would spend part of my day writing the script and photocopying the script – secretly- and getting calls, organizing stuff. It was good. It was like I had an office.
Int:The next film in your credits Cheryl Dunne´s ´The Watermelon Woman´, an excellent film but not a large box office draw.
GT:I thought it was an excellent movie too. It was a good story and a good script, I was very proud of it.
Int:in your latest film ´Preaching to the Perverted´there are piercing doubles listed. Which are actually yours?
GT:I only have my ears and my tongue pierced. In the movie, she had her nipples pierced so I had these latex nipples. That glued on to my real nipples. It looked really real, but they come off. For the rolling around in bed scene, they would have to cut (filming) to find my nipple. At night I´d be back in the hotel room trying to get glue off my nipples. The piercing double… actually the martini of the shoot, the final shot; they had a piece of chicken that they pierced. So we were all standing around wondering who was in the shot and it was this piece of chicken.
Int:There were some mixed reviews on PTTP´s ending. How do you respond, if at all, to the negative critics?
GT:I thought it was really good, that it wasn´t just there´s the baby, bye see ya later and take the baby away. They really had built this family that worked. If you´re a woman and you´re acting you will eventually have to do a pregnant scene, a rape scene, and a wedding scene. I´ve got two down.
Int:What do you think of the possibility of playing a rape scene?
GT:I wouldn´t go near a rape scene; it would be so traumatic. I don´t care if you´re best friends with the actor, sex scenes are the weirdest things in the world. Rape scenes, I can´t even imagine.
Int:Which are you more like, the good girl or the bad girl?
GT:Bad girl, only I´m a bad girl in good girl clothing. People ask me which was my favourite outfit form ´Preaching to the Perverted´and I´m like ´Remember the scene where I´m in the suit? That was definitely my favourite outfit.´ For the first three weeks it was fun, I was in London, working on this movie, and on about the fourth week it was 5:30 in the morning, the rubber was cold, all the make up… I was over it.
Int:What are you currently working on?
GT:I actually just left Mary (Harron, her Canadian writing partner) this morning. We are trying to finish up our script about Bettie Page. We hope to make right after she does `American Psycho´ which is another script that we wrote together that she´s just about to settle casting for. I moved to LA in May and I´m doing a lot of meeting – six different projects that I´m meeting on. They do love to meet in LA, they love to meet and meet and meet. One of them eventually will be something that I write next, I go to two or three auditions a week, and hope that it all works out.
Int:How did you get hooked up with the Bettie Page story?
GT:I was in London with ´Go Fish´at London Gay and Lesbian film festival. Rose (Troche, her co writer) and I were travelling with the movie. I went downstairs and was waiting for a car and Mary was sitting with Christine (Vaschon the producer on `Go Fish´) and we started talking. In Mary´s true fashion she kept going on and on about Bettie Page; damn Canadians (laughs). She turns to me and says “Wow you look a lot like Bettie Page.” From there we just got along.
Int:What are your vices?
GT:I have a million… drinking, the phone – I can´t get off the phone. I can´t not call people. This cell phone is going to be the death of me, I think I´ve used up my 500 minutes in the last 48 hours. Saying mean, but funny, things about people and uh… flirting with no intent. It´s a really bad habit that I have.
Int:Which take us to the relationship topic, are you currently….?
GT:In a relationship? No, no, I couldn´t be more single and I have been for quite some time. It was fun for a couple of years and then I got sick of it.
Int:What was your longest relationship?
GT:Four years, I loved her; I still love her.
Int:Lesbians get a really bad wrap of having an army of ex-lovers as their best friends what do you think?
GT:I think it´s good that you can be friends with your ex-lovers. Otherwise it´s really depressing and alienating that you can spend a certain amount of time with them, but when you stop having sex the relationship is over. I´m friends with everyone I´ve been in a serious relationship with. Call me old fashioned… or new fangled.
This is the article in Limbo Magazine has one of our favourite Guin quotes in it:
“I’m a bad girl in good girl clothing” <-- which became our site moto Limbo Magazine courtesy Max's Collection Sadly the Limbo Site appears to be no more, another good mag biting the dust.