Farley Granger—whose boyish handsomeness made him a matinee idol in the 1950s, and lent a crucial air of naivete to his lead roles in the Alfred Hitchcock classics Rope and Strangers On A Train—has died of natural causes. He was 85.
Brilliant in both those roles, which Brian Juergens dubbed as “passive” and “gay-tinged”, he never really had the opportunity to deliver such complex performances or to appear in movies which we readily remember today. Perhaps, 1950s audiences were just not read for the intense, introspective and sensitive image he projected on the screen. In many ways, he was ahead of his time, yet he leaves behind two great performances in Hitchcock films. At least that director recognized his screen potential.
While this heartthrob never identified as “gay” and indeed, shunned the label, he all but acknowledged his homosexuality in a 2007 interview, “I’ve lived the greater part of my life with a man, so obviously that’s the most satisfying to me.”