Blanchett denies lesbian affairs
CATE Blanchett denied on Sunday a report that she had affairs with women, as the Cannes Film Festival swooned over her portrayal of a wealthy married woman who falls in love with an ambitious New York shopgirl in director Todd Haynes' Carol.
The film, which has won rave reviews from critics and audiences, shows Blanchett's title character and Rooney Mara as shopgirl Therese Belivet having an affair that includes making love in a motel "presidential suite".
At a news conference, Blanchett was quick to contradict the published version of an interview she gave to the trade publication Variety, in which she seemed to say that she had brought personal experience of affairs with women to the role.
"From memory, the conversation ran, 'Have you had relationships with women?' And I said, 'Yes, many times. If you mean I've had sexual relationships with them, the answer is 'No' - but that obviously didn't make it to print," said the Australian actress and mother of four children.
"But in 2015, the point should be: Who cares?" she added.
Carol follows hard on the heels of the graphic Blue Is The Warmest Colour, about a lesbian affair, which won Cannes' top Palme d'Or prize two years ago.
Haynes' gorgeously filmed and sensitively plotted film is distinctly less racy, but very sympathetic to the relationship of two women who fall in love when they set eyes on each other in a store at Christmas time.
The film is based on a 1952 novel by Patricia Highsmith - who also wrote The Talented Mr Ripley - which she penned under a pseudonym because of the taboo subject matter.
"It was the first sort of lesbian story that had a happy ending," said Blanchett, who added that she had read several lesbian-themed novels to research her character.