- Director Ivan Reitman once asked Anne Heche to hide her sexuality, she wrote in a posthumous memoir.
- Reitman asked Heche why she couldn’t be “like Jodie Foster,” who had not publicly come out then.
- Heche’s forthcoming, unfinished memoir, “Call Me Anne,” will be released on January 24.
Film director Ivan Reitman once asked Anne Heche, who was dating Ellen DeGeneres at the time, to conceal her sexuality.
The actor, who passed away in August following a car crash, discussed the extremely awkward encounter in her unfinished posthumous memoir, “Call Me Anne,” which will be released on January 24.
Heche dated DeGeneres between 1997 and 2000. Being one of Hollywood’s first openly gay couples, their relationship was heavily scrutinized by media at the time, which among other things, reported on rumors that Heche and Degeneres were planning on having a child.
The news irked Reitman and Harrison Ford, her costar at the time, who confronted her on the set of the 1998 film “Six Days, Seven Nights,” according to a memoir excerpt published by People.
“They had seen the evening news,” Heche wrote, per People. “Rumors were reported that Ellen and I were pregnant. Our ‘pregnancy’ was everywhere. They showed me this as proof of why this openness about my relationship was becoming a pain in the ass for them. Why, Ivan asked me, can’t I just be like Jodie Foster?”
Heche professed she didn’t understand what Reitman meant.
“‘Everybody knows it,’ he explained, ‘it’ being her sexuality,'” she added. “She just doesn’t talk about it.'”
Reitman, who also produced “Animal House” and “Ghostbusters,” died last year.
Foster at the time had not officially come out to the public, opting to disclose her sexuality at the 2013 Golden Globes while accepting the Cecil B. DeMille lifetime achievement award.
Heche continued to discuss in her memoir why she was so transparent about her relationship with DeGeneres at the time, despite a painful “stigma” the actor later said hurt her career.
“Since nobody asked, I will tell you why,” Heche continued. “Because I had lived in a family that was built upon lies. My father hid his sexuality his entire life. When I met Ellen, and she was open and honest about her sexuality, it was the most attractive and alluring quality in a person that I had ever seen. I was mesmerized by her honesty, and that is why she was the first and only woman that I ever fell in love with. I was in love with a person who had chosen to leverage her very public persona in support of the cause she was standing up for, which was LGBTQ+ rights for everybody on the planet who wanted them.”