I'm reading old magazines again. At the moment I'm working my way through a pile of 1977 Photoplay film mags. A lot of it is dreadfully gushy tosh. There are a lot of articles that look like studio press releases reworked to fit the available space. One of the joys for me is the regular 'Please Tell Us' page in which Betty Jennings answers 'your queries about the stars'. In the days before the internet and wall to wall mass celebrity culture infotainment, finding out about film actors must have been a laborious process. These days it's three clicks and you can read their entire CV on IMDb and a couple more to find close-up shots of them in their underpants at underwearexpert.com.
Back in the 70s, British housewives, weak at the knees at the thought of Patrick Mower or Melvyn Hayes, had to write to hacks at monthly magazines to help fuel their stalking habits. In February's magazine (de Laurentiis's King Kong on the cover) Betty Jennings describes Jodie Foster as a 'fast-rising young star' and answers the following question from a Carolyn Warburton from Stalybridge, Cheshire:
Could you answer the following questions on Tim Matheson and Kurt Russell of [TV show] The Quest please? What age are they, how long have they been acting, where do they live and are they married?
To each other? (In those clothes it wouldn't surprise me) but back then it would be almost inconceivable that anyone would have thought that. But back then, Jodie Foster was a 'rising young star' and not the out, proud, and still successful gay icon she is today. The present is a strange country, we do things differently here. Hurrah!