Pornogate on the Beach!
Connie’s Boys Were Porn Stars, Mayor Had ‘No Clue’
What started off as a day at the beach for Connie Francis has turned into a scandal of sorts. Four ‘models’ were hired to escort the legendary singer to Fort Lauderdale Beach for a press conference. Mayor Jack Seiler was also in attendance to announce the anniversary fetes planned for her 1960 film “Where the Boys Are.”
The most well-known of the four actors was top-billed—occasionally bottom-filled —Falcon star Matthew Rush. Of course the SFGN photographer and I knew who he was. The question was, did Connie?
“I knew that two minutes after I met them at The Bahia Mar,” she later said
Like something out of Old Hollywood her hairdresser informed her of the actors blue stardom! Of course!
But the Mayor was clueless, and upon learning he was in a sea of porn stars, distanced himself from the scene, promising that taxpayer money was not used to pay for their appearance. Seiler also assured everyone that the boys were there for Connie and not for him. Lucky Dean Trantalis wasn’t elected. Might have got a different quote.
The Mayor was put on the spot the following day when an article about the event appeared in the Sun-Sentinel, Fort Lauderdale’s mainstream daily.
The irony can only be understated. After all, Ms. Francis was especially keen on the event, to promote “a more positive, wholesome, fun-loving, atmosphere in Fort Lauderdale and…trying to dispel the negative reputation which the town had earned.”
As stated in last week’s SFGN piece, the city has long tried to put a distance between its present, modern appeal and its past rowdy Spring Break reputation. But the very hotel, the Marlin Beach, where many of the movie’s scenes were filmed, was one of the most internationally known gay hotels on the planet; a place where men could lounge in the sun, nude by the pool.
“It was the epicenter of the gay community,” Joe A. Von Eron, president of the Dania Beach Tourism Association said. “I was there as a visitor in its heyday. There was nothing like the Marlin Beach Hotel.” He added, “The whole affair is just too funny.”
Connie Francis herself seems to be nonplussed about the situation.
“Oh my God! I don’t know what to do. I can’t hurt their feelings,” when it was suggested she dismiss the models. Ms. Francis is so nice. She even thinks porn stars have feelings!
“Everybody’s gotta make a living,” she added.
A personal friend of hers visiting from New Jersey was apparently so gaga over Matthew Rush and company that she had to admonish him.
“Pull yourself together,” she warned, reminding her they could be ‘the actor’s grandparents.’
“Who cares,” the friend responded. “Look at those muscles!”
All the models, supplied by Fab Scout, did appear in “boxer short” style bathing suits. There was no lewdness.
While the singer would not have personally selected pornographic actors, she seems to have handled the situation most sensibly.
“It was only a photo op,” she said. “They weren’t running for vice-president! What are we supposed to do? Check out every member of the orchestra, too?”
Despite the stir, the controversy, and the near scandal, Ms. Francis is still one of our fans. “As far as the gay community is concerned, I am in your corner 110%!”
Stated one guest, himself a Rentboy.com model, named only ‘Jeremy’: “I say bring the boys of Bel Ami to the Memorial Day festivities. Then the Beach will really be where the boys are.”
If so, we expect the Mayor, who has a demonstrated political history of being gay friendly and gay supportive, to be out…out sailing.