Richard Gere has said he accepted his
American Gigolo role in part to “immerse” himself in the
film's gay subtext.
Gere came to prominence in the 1980
crime drama playing Julian Kaye, a high-paid narcissistic male escort
who is suspected of murder.
In an interview with Entertainment
Weekly, Gere reflected on how he landed the role after John
Travolta bowed out at the last moment.
Director Paul Schrader “came to see
me in Malibu and said, 'You've got to say yes to this by tomorrow at
the latest.' I read it and I thought, 'This is a character I don't
know very well. I don't own a suit. He speaks languages; I don't
speak any languages. There's kind of a gay thing that's flirting
through it and I didn't know the gay community at all.' I wanted to
immerse myself in all of that and I had literally two weeks,” Gere
said. “So I just dove in. If I recall, [the nudity] wasn't in
the script. It was just in the natural process of making the movie.
I certainly felt vulnerable, but I think it's different for men than