KEY WEST FILM FESTIVAL

‘Pink Flamingos’ director John Waters performs Thursday at Key West Film Festival

 

Filmmaker John Waters, the pride of Baltimore, says he actively campaigned for Gov. Martin O’Malley and gay marriage in their state of Maryland. But don’t expect the Pink Flamingos writer-director to wed anytime soon.

“I don’t want to get married,” says Waters, 67, who also wrote and directed Female Trouble, Polyester and the original Hairspray, all starring his muse, Divine.

Waters, who performs his one-man show, This Filthy World, Thursday at the Key West Film Festival, says he’s “always amazed” that anyone would be against gay marriage.

“How could it threaten anybody? Everybody — straight, gay, asexual, nymphomaniac, crazy pervert — everybody knows how hard it is to find somebody to fall in love with,” Waters says. “It’s just amazing to me that anyone could mind that. However, do I want to mimic a ceremony that — actually, I’ve never had fun at a wedding in my entire life. So no, I don’t want to. That’s my personal choice. And I’m glad I have the right to, if I change my mind.”

Waters says he also supports LGBT moms and dads, but he’s not cut out for fatherhood, either.

“I like kids,” he says. “I’m a great uncle — I’ll get you an abortion, I’ll get you out of jail. But I’d be a terrible father. I’m way too self-involved. But children like me, and I like children. I teach a third-grade class in Baltimore sometimes. I give them Chuckie dolls and rat skeletons. We do improv. We play airplane crash.”

Waters actually foreshadowed gay parenting in his 1972 Divine shocker, Pink Flamingos.

“The only thing that’s really dated — but it isn’t really — is that lesbians would have babies and sell them,” he adds. “Selling them they still can’t do. But the lesbians to have babies? What’s shocking now is that they have more babies than Catholics! That part is funny. But they don’t get pregnant by kidnapping them and raping them in the cellar.”

The revolutionary director says he’s shocked that after 41 years, Pink Flamingos now runs on commercial TV. “Recently I got a check from it playing in Venezuela. How could that be possible? Do they say ‘This is what capitalism is like?’ People eat dog s--t in America!”

Waters is firm that Divine, who died in 1988 of heart failure, was a gay man and professional drag queen who never presented himself off-stage as a female.

“Divine is never in any of my movies, in the plots, transgender,” he says. “He’s a woman always. The audience knows he’s a man. The characters do not. That’s why the Hairspray musical was successful. It is about a woman, and the audience is in on the secret.”

Despite his early films being for adults only, kids and teenagers have always been Waters’ best audience. “They get it. They never question anything like adults do,” he says. “My films are about normal people that think they’re insane. That’s what always interests me.”

Waters believes that at some point, though, it’s time to grow up.

“I’ve always said that after 30, no matter what hand you’ve been dealt, you have to stop blaming your parents. Because then you’ll be a bitter 70-year-old, which is very depressing,” he says. “An angry 20-year-old is really sexy. An angry 60-year-old, you want to run from.”

Waters performs ‘This Filthy World’ following a screening of the documentary ‘I Am Divine’ at 7 p.m. Thursday at the fest. Info: kwfilmfest.com. O Cinema Wynwood is screening several of Divine’s films this month. www.o-cinema.org/.

STEVE ROTHAUS

Read more People stories from the Miami Herald

  •  
Andre 3000 of Outkast performs on stage at Wireless Festival at Finsbury Park on July 6, 2014 in London, United Kingdom.

    In the spotlight

    Andre 3000 of Outkast channels Jimi Hendrix

    Since April, André 3000 has been on the road, traveling from festival to festival with his old partner Big Boi to celebrate the 20th anniversary of their debut album as Outkast. And on Sept. 26, he’ll star, under his original name, André Benjamin, as Jimi Hendrix in Jimi: All Is by My Side, a biopic about the year just before Hendrix’s breakthrough, when he moved to London, underwent a style transformation and squared off against Eric Clapton.

  • Celebrity birthdays on Aug. 31

    Singer Van Morrison is 69. Actor Richard Gere is 65. Rock singer Glenn Tilbrook (Squeeze) is 57. Rock musician Gina Schock (The Go-Go’s) is 57. Singer Tony DeFranco (The DeFranco Family) is 55. R&B musician Larry Waddell (Mint Condition) is 51. Singer-composer Deborah Gibson is 44. Rock musician Greg Richling (Wallflowers) is 44. Actor Chris Tucker is 42. Actress Sara Ramirez is 39. R&B singer Tamara (Trina & Tamara) is 37.

  •  
(L-R) Cirque du Soleil's Jamie King, producer/musician Emilio Estefan Jr. and entertainment manager Bernie Yuman attend the SLS Las Vegas grand opening celebration at SLS Las Vegas on August 22, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

    La vida local

    Emilio Estefan ready to party; composers talk ‘Dora & Friends’; ‘Love Boat’ reunion

    Jamie King, writer and director of Cirque du Soleil Michael Jackson The Immortal World Tour and Cirque du Soleil Michael Jackson One in Vegas, has teamed with Emilio Estefan and executive producer Bernie Yuman to develop, produce, choreograph and score the massive spring 2015 grand opening gala of the hyper luxe Nassau resort Baha Mar.

Miami Herald

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category