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Cate Blanchett had the best response to being called a lesbian icon: ‘I’ll take it!’

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Cate Blanchett at Critics Choice Award. (Getty)

Cate Blanchett’s latest film Tár sees the actress take on another LGBTQ+ storyline, and she couldn’t be happier about her status as a lesbian icon.

In the film, Blanchett plays Lydia Tár, a world-leading conductor whose career begins to spiral out of control after abuse allegations from students.

As her marriage to wife Sharon (Nina Hoss) frays and her relationship with student Olga (Sophie Kauer) becomes increasingly twisted, Lydia begins to fall from grace.

Having impressed audiences and critics alike, Blanchett’s latest entry in the lesbian film canon has just earned her both a Golden Globe and Critics Choice award.

When asked about about being dubbed a lesbian icon by the community during an interview with Attitude alongside co-star Nina Hoss, she responded: “Yeah baby!

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“That’s so nice. I don’t know what it means but it’s nice. Yeah, cool, I’ll take it.”

Blanchett, who has previously garnered Oscar nominations for her performances in Carol (2016) and a Notes on a Scandal (2007), also used her Critics Choice victory to empower women.

“[We should] stop the televised horse race of it all because can I tell you every single woman – whether television, film, advertising, tampon commercials, whatever – you’re all out there doing amazing work that is inspiring me continually,” she declared in her acceptance speech.

However, Tár has not been without its controversy.

What is the Tár controversy?

In the lead up to the film’s release Marin Alsop, herself a world-leading lesbian conductor, spoke out against the abuse plot line.

Speaking to the The Times, she said: “I was offended. I was offended as a woman, I was offended as a conductor, I was offended as a lesbian.”

She added that the storyline was “heart-breaking” when she knows countless men within the industry who have perpetrated abuse.

However, Blanchett has addressed these concerns. In an interview with BBC Radio 4, she explained: “It is a meditation on power and corrupting nature of power. It is a very existential metaphysical examination of someone’s psyche.

Cate Blanchett in Tár. (Focus Features)
Cate Blanchett in Tár. (Focus Features)

“I don’t think you could have talked about the corrupting nature of power in as nuanced a way as Todd Field has done as a filmmaker if there was a male at the centre of it, because we understand so absolutely what that looks like.”

“And I think power is a corrupting force no matter what one’s gender is, it affects all of us.”

She went on to clarify that she has the “utmost respect” for Alsop as a trailblazer. “It is a very provocative film and will elicit a lot of very strong responses for people.

“The circumstances of the character are entirely fictitious. But I also looked at novelists and visual artists and musicians of all stripes. It’s a very non-literal film.”

Tár is in cinemas now.

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