Queers can be evil, too! Jamie Babbit on “Breaking the Girls”

 
 

AE: I’m curious, when something big happens like DOMA and Prop 8 finally going away, does that make you want to tell that story? Does that inspire you creatively or is that more of a personal victory for you? Do they ever crossover like that?

JB: They absolutely do crossover. I mean The Itty Bitty Titty Committee, the movie I made, was a very political movie. Actually, the characters in that movie were more anarchist gay people who were against gay marriage and the very kind of libertarian gay sex of our community that is anti-gay-marriage because it’s asking our community to assimilate to something that a lot of gay people celebrate that we have this kind of outsider status.

So, that was something I wanted to explore in The Ittty Bitty Titty Committee. It was a lot of young people who are against marriage. It just seems like we’re just gentrifying, we’re just becoming like everything else. Can’t we have our own world and can’t we have our own laws. What’s wrong with a marriage with three people? What’s wrong with a marriage with six people? We’ve always had to create our own families because we’ve been rejected and marginalized. So, let’s celebrate how unique and free our community is. Why do we have to go to this monogamous marriage construct? That was something that I explored in Itty Bitty Titty Committee.

Once again, I got a lot of shit for it but I’m interested in debate and I’m interested in people who are marginalized even within the queer community. So, there’s definitely people who are anti-gay-marriage. So, I was a domestic partner for 14 years in California. I really appreciated all the laws and just from a civil rights perspective, the legality of marriage is an amazing thing. I also have two kids in my gay marriage, so all that stuff became very important when I had gay divorce. So, I personally am very happy that all those laws passed. But I am always exploring both sides of politics in my work for sure.

Honestly, I was going through my gay divorce and literally in divorce court in California when the whole gay marriage thing was happening. So, I have a different idea about gay marriage and knowing that for at least 50 percent of the community, just like the straight community, there’s gay divorce. So, I do think the laws are great and they protect us and we need that.

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AE: Have you had a chance to see Orange is the New Black, have you had a chance to check that out at all?

JB: No. I can’t wait though. I mean, I love Natasha Lyonne so obviously I’m very excited to see what she’s doing on the show. My brother is a second grade teacher in the Bronx and my kids go to a school in West Hollywood that has a ton of gay families. What was interesting is I went to the Bronx to hang out with my brother and to meet his kids and hang out in his class. There were so many queer families in the Bronx, as many as there were at a private school in West Hollywood. The difference is that the lesbian families that were in his class in the Bronx had all met in prison!

Breaking the Girls is available on IFC On Demand today, July 26.

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