Jodie Foster outed (again)?

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The cover for Out magazine’s upcoming issue features two models holding masks of Jodie Foster and Anderson Cooper over their faces, accompanied by the headline, “Glass Closets: Why the Stars Won’t Come Out and Play”:

The magazine also includes Jodie (at #43) on its controversial new list of “The 50 Most Powerful Gay Men and Lesbians in America” (Ellen’s #3 and Rosie’s #6). The surprise isn’t that Jodie’s a powerful lesbian, but that Out is publicly identifying her as such — to date, most straight and gay publications have avoided explicitly calling her gay, preferring hints and implications instead. So what prompted this change? I’m not complaining, mind you, just intrigued. Have we reached a tipping point in journalism (or at least, entertainment journalism) in which a celebrity’s public statements (or non-statements) on their sexual orientation is irrelevant?

Or are Jodie Foster and Anderson Cooper already considered semi-out, since they aren’t bringing opposite-sex partners to events or pretending to be ultra-heterosexual in interviews? (For the gay men’s take on this issue, check out Michael’s blog post on AfterElton.com.)

More importantly: if you define “powerful” as people who can get things done, how on earth did porn director Chi Chi LaRue, blogger Perez Hilton, and Interview magazine editor Ingrid Sischy rank higher than Jodie Foster? And if they’re going to list people who aren’t technically out, why aren’t they including the myriad other more powerful closeted gay men and lesbians (especially politicians) who affect more lives than Chi Chi LaRue?

Don’t even get me started on why there are only 13 women on the list, only one of whom is a woman of color. Out doesn’t exactly have a good track record on giving lesbians equal coverage, but there’s also no denying that (white) men still have most of the power in America. So a list that was gender balanced would be about as realistic as Papi’s accent on The L Word.

But back to Jodie Foster — so far, she hasn’t commented on making the Out list. I’m sure lots of other people will, though, so I’ll update you on how the media is covering the controversy in my Best. Lesbian. Week. Ever. column on Friday.

If you just can’t get enough of Jodie in the meantime, check out our “Lesbians at the Oscars” slideshow, and Kim Ficera’s column “Don’t Quote Me: Jodie Foster and the Great Lesbian Hope.”

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