Eastwood Wants Joaquin Phoenix as J. Edgar Hoover's Lover
With the upcoming big screen adaptation of the life of J. Edgar Hoover, founder of the FBI, already having Clint Eastwood behind the camera and Leonardo DiCaprio in front of it, Hoover was already quite the high profile project. Well there's a chance it could get even more attention as Vulture has revealed Joaquin Phoenix, fresh off his crazy, documented, public facade in I'm Still Here, is the top choice to play Hoover's protégé suspected lover Clyde Tolson. Frequently referred to in contemporary settings as an ambiguously gay crime-fighting duo, the two were in close contact at both the FBI and also in their social lives. Read on!
Aside from his work at the FBI from 1947-1972, Tolson also spent many nights dining out with Hoover at night clubs and even spent vacations together. None of this is official yet, and apparently, contrary to what we'd heard previously, DiCaprio hasn't even closed his deal to play Hoover yet (though it is expected to be finalized soon). Once DiCaprio has crossed the T's and dotted the I's, an offer is expected to be sent to Phoenix. The real question is whether or not he'll end up taking the role. But if he's looking for a big return to acting after a potentially career-harming performance in a faux documentary, this high profile biopic from writer Dustin Lance Black (Milk) is just what the doctor ordered.
Though it sounds daring to have his return to the spotlight be in the form of a real-life, closeted homosexual opposite DiCaprio, the role is certainly a challenge as this is a most unconventional romance from history. Imagine having to see your secret lover at work everyday when just the very act of your relationship, even in the open, would cast millions of judgmental eyes on you and the FBI. Though Hoover did his best to keep his love for Tolson secret (going so far as to hunt down and threaten men who questioned his heterosexuality), the FBI director left Tolson everything (his estate, the life insurance policy and even the American flag from atop Hoover's casket) upon his death. I'd love for Phoenix to make this his grand return to the big screen. How about you?