Jodie Foster came out without really coming out, and suggested she was retiring from acting without exactly saying so, in a long, breathless and rambling speech at Sunday night's Golden Globe Awards.
Foster took the stage as this year's winner of the Cecil B. DeMille Lifetime Achievement Award, which had been announced previously. But her acceptance speech was anything but predictable as the veteran actress seized control of what is every year a noisy, boozy ballroom; the crowd of A-listers quickly quieted down as it became apparent that she had something serious and important to say.
The 50-year-old Oscar-winner for "The Silence of the Lambs" and "The Accused," who's been protective of her private life and reluctant to discuss her sexual orientation, was coy at first, suggesting she had a big announcement that would make her publicist nervous (the broadcast audio dropped out at this point, but for no apparent reason; nothing was said off-color). Then she stated: "I'm just going to put it out there, loud and proud ... I am, uh, single," pausing for dramatic effect before that last word. "I hope you're not disappointed that there won't be a big coming-out speech tonight. I already did my coming-out about a thousand years ago back in the Stone Age."
Foster joked that celebrities are now expected to reveal they're gay "with a press conference, a fragrance and a prime-time reality show. And you guys might be surprised, but I am not Honey Boo Boo Child. No. I'm sorry. That's just not me. It never was and it never will be. But please don't cry, because my reality show would be so boring."
She added defiantly: "If you had been a public figure from the time that you were a toddler, if you'd had to fight for a life that felt real and honest and normal against all odds, then maybe you, too, might value privacy above all else."
Foster thanked Cydney Bernard, a production manager whom she identified as "my heroic co-parent, my ex-partner in love but righteous soul sister in life," her former partner of 20 years — a relationship she never hid and from which she has two sons.
Actress Jodie Foster poses with her Cecil B. DeMille award at the 70th annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California January 13, 2013. (REUTERS)
She also made it sound as if she planned to retire from acting once and for all, something she'd toyed with previously.
"This feels like the end of one era and the beginning of something else. Scary and exciting, and now what?" Foster said. "I may never be up on this stage again, on any stage, for that matter."
But backstage afterward, she clarified for reporters: "I could never stop acting. You'd have to drag me behind a team of horses. I'd like to be directing tomorrow. I'm more into it than I have ever been."
As for why she chose this place and time to discuss her private life, Foster explained backstage: "The speech kind of speaks for itself. ... It's a big moment. I wanted to say what's most in my heart."
Her revelation, vague as it was, nonetheless set Twitter on fire with reactions. Some called her words moving and brave while others suggested that she should have done more to be a role model for lesbians.
Ricky Martin, who came out himself in 2010, tweeted: "Jody Foster On your terms. Its your time! Not before nor after. Its when it feels right."
And Amy Poehler, who co-hosted the Golden Globes with longtime friend and fellow comedian Tina Fey, cracked as she was signing off for the night: "We're going home with Jodie Foster!"
Actress Jodie Foster arrives at the 70th annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California, January 13, 2013. REUTERS
Jodie Foster: 'will eventually tell sons who their father is'
Jodie Foster allegedly plans to tell her sons who their father is when they turn 21.
The Oscar-winning actress - who ended years of speculation by coming out as gay at Sunday night's (13.01.13) Golden Globe Awards - has never revealed the paternity of her beloved boys, Charles, 14, and 12-year-old Kit but the mother of the star's best friend claims she will do when they come of age.
Reverend Beverly Bates - whose late son, Hollywood producer Randy Stone, is rumoured to be the boys' father - told MailOnline: ''Randy told me that Jodie said she'll tell the boys who their father is when they're 21. He said he could never tell me because Jodie was his best friend. He said 'Mom, I can't discuss this with you'. He told me he had had to sign documents, it was a secret he took to his grave, that was how much he loved Jodie.
He said 'I can't break my promise to Jodie' - and he kept his promise to her.
The 'Silence of the Lambs' star remained close to prominent gay rights' activist Randy up until his death from heart failure in February 2007, and referred to him as her best friend at the Oscars in 2007.
However, she would never confirm he was the father of her boys even though Beverly would love to know.
She said: ''I would love to know if Randy is the boys' father, I personally think he gave Jodie the gift, but she will never tell me. And Randy made an agreement with Jodie that he would never tell. I know the boys have red hair and freckles, that's not from our family - but Jodie's side.
To the boys he was 'Uncle Randy'. He took them everywhere with him and cared for them as if they were his own.
Jodie raised the children with her former girlfriend Cydney Bernard and despite their split in 2008, the pair remain close and are both involved with the upbringing of Charles and Kit. (C) BANG Media International