Michael Ausiello is known as prominent entertainment journalist in Hollywood, but with the new movie, Spoiler Alert, the tables are turned and he is providing the entertainment to be reported on.
Based on his best-selling memoir “Spoiler Alert: The Hero Dies,” the film directed by Michael Showalter (The Big Sick) and adapted by David Marshall Grant is a beautifully told story of love and loss as it follows TV reporter Michael (Jim Parsons) and his partner Kit’s (Ben Aldridge) relationship after Kit is diagnosed with cancer.
For Aldridge, it was incredible special to play Kit. He recognized the huge level of responsibility to play him but watching videos of him and getting to know him helped Aldridge a lot.
“I just really loved him,” Aldridge old GLAAD’s Anthony Allen Ramos. A photographer, Aldridge fell in more and more in love with the process of getting to know Kit and there was one prop that really helped.
“Using that camera that was actually his in those scenes was extremely powerful,” said Aldridge. “To think that I was looking at that screen that he had looked at and taken that photo that made that scene — that was much more moving for me; just hold holding that and looking at his artwork as well. “I took real pleasure in just being able to see how he saw the world and what he found interesting. That was really revealing to me about his sense of humor… I loved getting to know him. I wish I was able to know him in person.”
As LGBTQ representation becomes more and more front and center in film and TV, Parsons and Aldridge are excited that their romantic dramedy in the vein of Terms of Endearment is hitting the mainstream for all sorts of audiences to see.
“I got to take part in telling the type of story that I grew up loving to watch and connecting to, but not about gay couples — they were still powerful to me and I feel the same way about our movie,” Parsons said in the interview. “I don’t think you need to be gay to have this powerfully affect you..that’s what’s been so moving to me about this.”
Aldridge chimed in, “I was so unfortunately shame-filled that I that I rejected a lot of things that were there when I was younger, but something like this I think would have just given me another option of a look at what it meant to be gay — you know, a positive example of love. And I think this film really does give you all the spectrum of what love is and what being in a relationship is.”
Also starring in the film are Sally Field and Bill Irwin, who played Kit’s parents Marilyn and Bob. Both talked to Ramos about the importance of this film and how they personally connect to the story.
“I hope people will come and sit in the movie theater again and take away what they will take away what they will and see this,” said Irwin. “Like Sally, I’m the proud parent of a proud gay young man.”
“It’s about loving anybody, how hard it is to love somebody in the world, whether you’re gay or straight,” Field said about Spoiler Alert. “It’s a story about two parents that fight it out with their child and fight it out with each other and ultimately love each other. [It’s about] the partners that love each other and fight with each other. That’s the story that I wanted to tell [and] I was glad to be there to tell.”
Field had previously worked with Showalter on the indie film Hello, My Name Is Doris and he knows her son, Sam. Showalter invited them to watch a screening movie and Field said that Showalter wanted Sam to see the movie more.
“[Sam is] a very tough critic,” Field pointed out. “I’m always frightened for him to see my work… he really, really loved the movie. He didn’t cry – but that’s all right. But I think he felt emotional, but he liked it so I’m glad.”
For Ausiello, sharing such a personal story on screen to the masses is a big moment. He admitted to Ramos that he hadn’t really given any thought to what Kit would have thought of the movie. “He was very particular about his art and would always have strong surprising opinions and I couldn’t even begin to think, what his reaction would be,” stated Ausiello. “I’m sure he would have notes — absolutely, he would have notes.”
He added, “I do know that he would be pleased that we cast Ben Aldridge as him mostly because he’s so f*cking hot.”
Watch GLAAD’s Jose Useche interviewing the cast of Spoiler Alert at the NYC Premiere!
Spoiler Alert opens in theaters December 2.