Tab Hunter passes away at the age of 86

Hollywood star Tab Hunter has died aged 86

Tab Hunter, star of the film Damn Yankees and Hollywood gay icon of the 1960s and 70s, has died.

In 1955, Hunter was almost outed by the magazine Confidential when it highlighted his five-year-old arrest for disorderly conduct at a "pajama party" attended by a number of gay people.

He was even a double threat, topping the pop charts as a singer with "Young Love".

But in his 2005 memoir, "Tab Hunter Confidential: The Making of a Movie Star", Hunter recounted the stresses of being a love object to millions of young women when he was, in reality, a gay man.

He was working as a stable boy when he was discovered, and his first film was a minor part in The Lawless in 1950.

"I believed, wholeheartedly - still do - that a person's happiness depends on being true to themselves", he wrote.

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In the 1985 Bartel film Lust in the Dust - a spoof of spaghetti westerns that also starred Lainie Kazan and in its outlandishness is often mistakenly attributed to John Waters - Hunter was comfortable enough to take delight in the joke of his character's name: Abel Wood, a pun that's as much acting critique as sex joke.

Born Arthur Andrew Kelm on July 11, 1931, in New York City, he moved to California with his mother and brother after his parents divorced, where they resumed their mother's maiden name of Gelien. Hunter also scored a number one hit in 1957 with Young Love. I grew up full of denial.

Those two films framed Hunter in one of Hollywood's oldest lies: a false romance with Wood, meant to create a protective smoke screen in front of his homosexuality. You can check out more social media tributes to Hunter for yourself below. "He would always take the time to answer questions and be courteous". "Hunters." An unforgettable name was the result.

He collapsed on Sunday in the arms of his husband of 35 years, Allan Glaser, at their home before being rushed to the hospital. The memoir was developed into a documentary in 2015 and his affair with Perkins is the subject of Tab & Tony, an upcoming film starring Zachary Quinto. "I'm very grateful for this road that I've been on - it's been a good one".

Hunter did not dwell on his Hollywood career or regret losing it. "And I look up there and I think I've contributed", Hunter told The Hollywood Reporter. "When Hollywood is through with you it throws you away like an old shoe... we've got to face up to these things". "We only make this trip once".

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