Tab Hunter Weighs in on James Dean’s Bisexuality Rumors

rs_634x1024-150317050902-634.James-Dean-JR-31715His family denies it, his friends have supported it, and some biographers confirmed it. But, was James Dean in fact bisexual?

Few people are around who could call Dean a close friend, and Tab Hunter, the former 1950s matinee idol, is one of them. Although the  infamous tabloid Confidential outed Tab Hunter in 1955, he didn’t discuss it until 2006, and the actor, who is now 83, was giving interviews at the South-by-Southwest film festival in Austin, where his documentary  Tab Hunter Confidential is debuting.

He says that he and Dean were pretty close because he was friends with the Rebel Without a Cause actor’s agent. According to an interview:

“People always said that,” Hunter said about Dean swinging both ways. “All I know is I saw him with Ursula Andrews a lot and with Pier Angeli.” (Dean was dating Andrews at the time of his death. He and Angeli apparently wanted to marry but never did because her mother was against it.)

“People want to hang labels on people—Oh, he’s like this or he’s like that—[but] to me I don’t buy into that…As far as I know [about] Jimmy, no,” Hunter said.

Tab Hunter never talked much about his sexuality, but he had a longtime relationship with bisexual Psycho star Anthony Perkins. He also got to pretend Divine was a girl in Polyester and said,Divine as one of my favorite leading ladies. There was Geraldine Page, Natalie Wood, Sophia Loren and Divine!”

Mike Szymanski
Mike Szymanski has written about bisexual issues since 1989 and has one of the longest-running regular bisexual columns as the National Bisexuality Examiner. He came out as bisexual in a cover story of Genre magazine, which resulted in more than 50 television appearances, including Ricki Lake, Phil Donahue Show and 20/20. Szymanski won the Lambda Literary Award in 2007 for co-authoring an informative humor book “The Bisexual’s Guide to the Universe: Quips, Tips and Lists for Those Who Go Both Ways.” Write him at [email protected]