Preview: Another Country, National Film Theatre, London

The art of kiss and tell
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The Independent Culture

Tonight, at the National Film Theatre, Rupert Everett will discuss his career so far after a screening of Another Country, the 1984 film that made him a movie star. The actor has just published his memoirs, Red Carpets and Other Banana Skins, in which he recalls the highs and lows of a career that he feels never quite recovered from his coming out as gay in 1989.

Now 47, he is gloomily humorous about his Hollywood years, and wildly indiscreet, confessing to affairs with Paula Yates, Beatrice Dalle and Susan Sarandon, and recalling how, while shooting a sex scene with Sharon Stone, the actress claimed she could turn a gay man straight in five minutes.

He also claims that Julia Roberts felt threatened by her younger co-star Cameron Diaz in My Best Friend's Wedding, and that the director John Schlesinger actually fell asleep as Everett acted opposite Madonna in the disastrous The Next Best Thing. "We got to the end of the scene, but no one said, 'Cut'. We improvised for a moment, and then there was a loud snore!"

A graduate of Glasgow's Citizens' Theatre, Everett's first triumph was in the stage version of Another Country, in 1982. But disillusionment with his chosen profession set in early ("I had built up such a fantasy about show business - opium, Montgomery Clift, Oscar Wilde, suffering, sexual ambivalence..."), and after an ill-advised bid for pop stardom, and the equally ill-advised Hearts of Fire with Bob Dylan in 1990, the job offers tailed off. Everett occupied himself by writing two novels and found work in Europe - "Europe was where you went to die in your career".

There have, of course, been successes along the way, but he feels that his role as Roberts's gay confidant in the aforementioned box-office hit of 1997 has typecast him. "Modern cinema would have me just play a giggly gay every time," he says. "It is a bore for both me and the audience, so I'd prefer to do nothing at all".

NFT1, South Bank, London SE1 (020-7928 3232), 6.15pm

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