Oliver Stone wants everyone to know he is not homophobic.
Earlier this week, the “Wall Street” director spoke with Russian President Vladimir Putin in an interview promoting the new documentary “Revealing Ukraine”.
The interview stirred controversy when LGBTQ rights in Russian were broached.
“I don’t know what is going on with the American culture,” Stone said to Putin. “It’s very strange right now. So much of the argument, so much of the thinking, so much of the newspaper, television commentaries about gender, people identify themselves, and social media, this and that, I’m male, I’m female, I’m transgender, I’m cisgender. It goes on forever, and there is a big fight about who is who.”
Putin responded, “We have a law banning [gay] propaganda among minors.”
“Yes, that’s the one I’m talking about,” Stone said. “It seems like maybe that’s a sensible law.”
People condemned the director’s comments and his seeming support of Russia’s anti-gay law.
After the interview was published, Stone responded to the controversy on Facebook, saying that the status of LGBTQ people in Russia is “misunderstood” and that neither he nor Putin was anti-gay/LGBTQ.
Stone pointed to his film “Alexander”, about Alexander the Great, which featured gay themes.
“Beyond the Hephaestion story in the sexuality department, I prominently featured Alexander’s love for the Persian eunuch Bagoas, certainly an example of a third sex and emblematic of Alexander’s world vision, which I much admired,” he wrote. “Do not bring American expectations to Russian life any more than you expect Iran, Korea, Venezuela, or China to follow our political or social demands.”