If you’re going to quiz Tom Hardy about his sexual history, you best come ready to play. The man is wily. Alas, Daily Xtra’s Graeme Coleman was not, when he asked the Legend actor a relevant, though half-constructed, question about sexuality and celebrity during a press conference at the Toronto International Film Festival yesterday.
“In the film, your character Ronnie is very open about his sexuality,” said the Canadian LGBT site’s reporter starting out well (Hardy plays two violently criminal twins in Legend, one of whom is an out gay man in the 1960s). Coleman continued, “But given interviews you’ve done in the past, your own sexuality seems a bit more ambiguous.” Again, not bad—Hardy admitted to “playing” with “everyone and everything” in 2008, but has been more tight-lipped about his sexual history as his star has risen.
Then, Coleman goes off the rails. “Do you find it hard for celebrities to talk to media about their sexuality?” Oops.
As a reporter myself, I can tell you that this is what is called a loaded question. It’s also a bad one. Instead of just asking Hardy if his own sexual experience helped inform the character or something, Coleman asked a sweepingly general query with the unspoken subtext: “I think you have a hard time talking about your sexuality.” As you can see above at around the 28-minute mark, Hardy quietly, carefully destroys him.
Hardy: What on Earth are you on about?”
Coleman: I was referring to your interview Attitude magazine a few years ago.
Hardy: But what is your question?
Coleman: I was wondering if you find it difficult for celebrities to talk about their sexuality.
Hardy: I don’t find it difficult for celebrities to talk about their sexuality. Are you asking me about my sexuality?
Hardy: Thank you [moves on to next question like absoultely nothing just happened]
While I’d like to see Hardy be more open and playful about his sexual past, that’s also his business and reporters should either let it lie or ask better questions. You’ve also got to feel for Coleman, who hopefully learned a bit about how to construct better questions. Hope you’re okay, guy.