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10 Famous Men Rumored to be Bisexual

Frank Micelotta/Stephen Lovekin/Hulton Archive, Getty Images

We just learned that recording industry legend Clive Davis is bisexual, thanks to an interview that he did with CBS news. The legend who discovered such names as Janis Joplin, Santana, Whitney Houston and Alicia Keys and founded Bad Boy Records has a brand new book ‘The Sound Track of My Life,’ where he tells the whole story.

Clive is brave — we salute him. While many Hollywood females are openly bisexual (Angelina Jolie, Lindsay Lohan, Anne Heche…), their male counterparts are much quieter about their sexual orientation, possibly due to fear of stigma. Here’s a rundown of 10 famous men who have been rumored to swing both ways, not that there is anything wrong with that (seriously).

Marlon Brando

Brando’s most famous comment about his sexuality was not about himself, but it was a claim that Paul Newman was also a bisexual. In a book about Newman that came out in 2009, Brando says, “He never fooled me. Paul Newman had just as many on-location affairs as the rest of us, and he was just as bisexual as I was. But, where I was always getting caught with my pants down, he managed to do it in the dark.” A previous biography about Brando revealed a photograph of him engaging in oral sex with another man.

James Dean

A biopic last year about the rebel movie star put Dean’s long-rumored bisexuality on the screen. “Even if the film comes to no solid conclusions about which team Dean played for, this is still a win for making any mention of the issue at all,” said one blogger. Elizabeth Taylor wasn’t alone in her theory that Dean looked both ways for love: He is rumored to have had a history of homosexual relationships.

Billie Joe Armstrong

The Green Day frontman and husband of nearly twenty years is open about his sexuality: “I think I’ve always been bisexual… It’s a beautiful thing,” he told Out magazine in 2010. “I don’t really classify myself as anything. And when it comes to sex, there are parts of me that are very shy and conservative. I want to respect my wife,” he said. He’s not that shy though, as it’s pretty easy to uncover pictures and public video of Armstrong kissing other men.

Cary Grant

In her 2011 memoir, Cary Grant’s daughter wrote that her father “liked it when people called him gay.” During his lifetime, he was married five times and faced loads of accusations of bisexuality. She believes that he reveled in the attention the conversation offered up, and that many women pursued him in hopes of “bringing him back” to their side. During the 1930s, the rumors really flew when Grant and fellow actor Randolph Scott moved into a Malibu beach house together, which became known as Bachelor Hall. This is either a really graceful way of handling his sexuality in a time when it was not readily accepted, or Cary Brand is the most brilliant pickup artist who ever lived. Either way, we salute him.

Michael Stipe

During a 2011 interview, the 51-year-old R.E.M. singer said, “On a sliding scale of sexuality I’d place myself around 80-20, but I definitely prefer men to women. He added, “I had sex with, and enjoyed sex with, women until I met someone that I fell in love with, who is now my boyfriend.” He argued that he doesn’t want to label his sexuality, and that identifying as bisexual would mean casting himself into one category.

Sir Laurence Oliver

His secret came out inside of a biography in 2011 that not only cast Laurence Olivier as bisexual, but outed Vivien Leigh’s sexuality as well. This power couple, and two of the 20th century’s most revered actors, were actually acting like they were madly in love. In real life, Olivier was gallivanting with some of Hollywood’s biggest names, including comedian Danny Kaye, whom Olivier loved dearly.

Hans Christian Andersen

Most biographies about the famous author are pretty dull, but one stands out from the rest. “The Life of a Storyteller” by Jackie Wullschlager documents some secrets from Andersen’s life that are revealed inside of his personal diary. While Andersen did enjoy going to brothels to look at pretty ladies, he opens up about having feelings for both men and women. In his actual love life, there wasn’t much to write home about about either gender.

Herman Melville

The author of ‘Moby Dick’ kept his sexual preferences to himself during his life, and no biography has ever really shed light on this enigma of a man. Many argue though, that a close reading of his work shows the other side to Melville. “It’s just suffused with lovely homoerotic sensations,” said one researcher and author. If this guy noticed, didn’t Melville’s wife?

Burt Lancaster

He was one of Hollywood’s leading men, but author Kate Buford found compelling evidence that this hard-edged American had more to him than met the eye. He was married twice and was a notorious womanizer, yet Lancaster was enormously worried about his looks and insisted on hiring “homosexual personal secretaries,” according to reports. He reportedly preferred them because “they protect you” from nasty gossip about infidelity.

Archduke Wilhelm Franz

Archduke Wilhelm enjoyed wearing dresses from time to time, according to ‘The Red Prince,’ a book about his life. In the book, Timothy Snyder explains that during the Habsburg empire, Wilhelm tried to unite Ukrainian nationals in Eastern Europe, in hopes of becoming their leader. During that time, Snyder indicates that Wilhelm preferred the company of soldiers, especially “exotic looking ones.” Loud and clear. You do you, Archduke.

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