From his portrayal of a more vulnerable Bond to his cerise suit jacket on the red carpet, Daniel Craig has worked hard to defy expectations of masculinity – so it came as little surprise when the actor revealed he liked to frequent gay bars to avoid the "aggressive dick swinging" of hetero spaces.
“I’ve been going to gay bars for as long as I can remember,” Craig said on the podcast Lunch with Bruce. “One of the reasons: because I don’t get into fights in gay bars that often.”
The 53-year-old said he started going to gay bars when he was young because he wanted to avoid ending up “being in a punch-up” during a night out, which he said happened “quite a lot” in straight venues.
Craig, who has been married to Rachel Weisz for a decade, also said that when he was single it was a good way to meet women.
“[Gay bars] would just be a good place to go,” he said. “Everybody was chill, everybody. You didn’t really have to sort of state your sexuality. It was okay. And it was a very safe place to be. And I could meet girls there, cos there are a lot of girls there for exactly the same reason I was there. It was kind of an ulterior motive.”
Craig, who made his name starring alongside Jason Isaacs in Angels in America, the Pulitzer prize-winning play examining Aids and homosexuality in the US in the 1980s, has always been comfortable bending the boundaries of his sexuality.
He recently sent fans into a spin when he told Stephen Colbert that he kissed all of his leading men, after the No Time to Die villain Rami Malek said they had once had a playful smooch after rehearsal. "The thing is, it just breaks the ice," Craig said.
His podcast comments were largely welcomed by the LGBT community on Thursday, though some felt uncomfortable about his attempts to meet women in gay spaces. “Okay, the last bit is a tad gross, but who amongst us hasn’t taken a straight friend to a gay bar who’s ended up pulling,” wrote the culture magazine the Glue.
Craig and the podcast's host, Bruce Bozzi, who are old friends, also recalled being photographed hugging outside a gay bar in Venice Beach, California, in 2010, which at the time sparked tabloid speculation about Craig's sexuality.
“We’re tactile, we love each other. We give each other hugs, it’s okay. We’re two f***ing grown men,” Craig said. “For me, it was one of those situations and the irony is, you know, we kind of got caught, I suppose, which was kind of weird because we were doing nothing f***king wrong.
“What happened is we were having a nice night and I kind of was talking to you about my life when my life was changing and we got drunk and I was like, ‘Oh, let’s just go to a bar, come on, let’s f***ing go out.’”
Last month a viral TikTok post sparked a debate about whether gay spaces should be reserved for members of the LGBTQ+ community. While straight people weighed in to explain that such spaces made them feel safe, others said gay clubs were being used as an “aesthetic” by those who did not need them.
Craig recently received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. No Time to Die has made more than £50 million at the UK box office after just two weekends, already making it one of the top 10 highest grossing Bond films. – Guardian