Cannes: Cate Blanchett explains what she meant when she said she'd had 'relationships with women'

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Cate Blanchett Denies Lesbian Affairs


Remember when Cate Blanchett said she's had relationships with women "many times" and we all thought she was talking about being a lesbian? Well, today at the Cannes press conference for Carol, the new Todd Haynes movie in which she and Rooney Mara play lovers in the 1950s, Blanchett did a bit of clarifying that is sure to disappoint many. "From memory, the conversation ran, 'Have you had relationships with women?' and I said, 'Yes, many times,'" Blanchett said. "If you mean I've had sexual relationships with women, the answer's 'No.' But that obviously didn't make it into print."

38 PHOTOS
Cate Blanchett
See Gallery
Cannes: Cate Blanchett explains what she meant when she said she'd had 'relationships with women'
SYDNEY - NOVEMBER 01: AUSTRALIAN ACTRESS CATE BLANCHETT AT THE 1999 BELVIOUR ST THEATRE SEASON LAUNCH IN SYDNEY. (Photo by Patrick Riviere/Getty Images).
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15: Cate Blanchett arrives at the Australian premiere of Disney's Cinderella at the State Theatre on March 15, 2015 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 01: Actress Cate Blanchett attends the premiere of 'Cinderella' at the El Capitan Theatre on March 1, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
SYDNEY - MARCH 01: AUSTRALIAN ACTRESS CATE BLANCHETT AND AARON PEDERSEN AT HEARTLAND LAUNCH IN SYDNEY. (Photo by Patrick Riviere/Getty Images).
SYDNEY - MARCH 01: AUSTRALIAN ACTRESS CATE BLANCHETT, SHANE O'CONNOR AND AARON PEDERSEN AT HEARTLAND LAUNCH IN SYDNEY. (Photo by Patrick Riviere/Getty Images).
SYDNEY - MARCH 01: AUSTRALIAN ACTRESS CATE BLANCHETT AND GUEST AT THE SYDNEY CRITICS AWARDS 1994 IN SYDNEY. (Photo by Patrick Riviere/Getty Images).
383425 05: Actresses Cate Blanchett, left, and Hilary Swank arrive at the premiere of Paramount Classics'' 'The Gift' December 18, 2000 at the Paramount Theatre in Hollywood, CA. (Photo by Chris Weeks/Liaison)
BERLIN - FEBRUARY 7: Actress Cate Blanchett, very pregnant, attends the news conference to 'The Missing' at the 54th annual Berlinale International Film Festival February 7, 2004 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
WESTWOOD, CA - OCTOBER 8: (L to R) Actor Cate Blanchett and Bernie Guerin attend the Los Angeles film premiere of 'Veronica Guerin' at the Bruin Theatre on October 8, 2003 in Westwood, California. The film 'Veronica Guerin' opens nationwide on October 17, 2003 (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
Australian actress Cate Blanchett poses as she arrives to attend the screening of US director Steven Spielberg's film 'Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull' at the 61st Cannes International Film Festival on May 18, 2008 in Cannes, southern France. The world premiere of the latest instalment in the 'Indiana Jones' saga, the first in 19 years, is the hottest ticket at this year's Cannes film festival. AFP PHOTO / Valery Hache (Photo credit should read VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)
Australian actress Cate Blanchett leaves the Festival Palace after attending the screening of US director Steven Spielberg's film 'Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull' at the 61st Cannes International Film Festival on May 18, 2008 in Cannes, southern France. The world premiere of the latest instalment in the 'Indiana Jones' saga, the first in 19 years, is the hottest ticket at this year's Cannes film festival. AFP PHOTO / Valery Hache (Photo credit should read VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JULY 22: Cate Blanchett attends the 'Blue Jasmine' New York Premiere at the Museum of Modern Art on July 22, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 20: Actress Cate Blanchett attends the premiere of 'Blue Jasmine' hosted by Sony Picture Classics on July 24, 2013 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images)
SANTA MONICA, CA - JANUARY 16: Actress Cate Blanchett accepts the Best Actress award for 'Blue Jasmine' onstage during the 19th Annual Critics' Choice Movie Awards at Barker Hangar on January 16, 2014 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Actress Cate Blanchett celebrates winning Best Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama for 'Blue Jasmine' in the press room during the 71st Annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California, January 12, 2014. AFP PHOTO / Robyn BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
SANTA BARBARA, CA - FEBRUARY 01: Actress's Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara attend the Moet & Chandon Lounge at The 2014 Santa Barbara International Film Festival at The Arlington Theater on February 1, 2014 in Santa Barbara, California. (Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images for Moet & Chandon)
SANTA MONICA, CA - MARCH 01: Actress Cate Blanchett attends the 2014 Film Independent Spirit Awards at Santa Monica Beach on March 1, 2014 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 02: Actress Cate Blanchett accepts the Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role award for 'Blue Jasmine' onstage during the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre on March 2, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 02: Actresses Cate Blanchett (L) and Jennifer Lawrence attend the Oscars held at Hollywood & Highland Center on March 2, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 02: Cate Blanchett attends the Oscars at Hollywood & Highland Center on March 2, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images)
French actress Adele Exarchopoulos and US actor Logan Lerman (L) pose with Australian actress Cate Blanchett (C) after receiving the Trophee Chopard during the 67th edition of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, southern France, on May 15, 2014. AFP PHOTO / JEAN CHRISTOPHE MAGNENET (Photo credit should read JEAN CHRISTOPHE MAGNENET/AFP/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 02: Actress Cate Blanchett attends the Oscars held at Hollywood & Highland Center on March 2, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 02: Actress Cate Blanchett attends the Oscars held at Hollywood & Highland Center on March 2, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)
CANNES, FRANCE - MAY 16: Cate Blanchett attends the 'How To Train Your Dragon 2' premiere during the 67th Annual Cannes Film Festival on May 16, 2014 in Cannes, France. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)
Australian actress Cate Blanchett smiles during a press conference for the animated film 'Dragon 2' at the 67th edition of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, southern France, on May 16, 2014. AFP PHOTO / ALBERTO PIZZOLI (Photo credit should read ALBERTO PIZZOLI/AFP/Getty Images)
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 09: Cate Blanchett attends the 'How To Train Your Dragon 2' Australian premiere at Event Cinemas George Street on June 9, 2014 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 11: Actress Cate Blanchett attends Women In Film 2014 Crystal + Lucy Awards presented by MaxMara, BMW, Perrier-Jouet and South Coast Plaza held at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza on June 11, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Women In Film / MaxMara)
CANNES, FRANCE - MAY 16: Actress Cate Blanchett attends the 'How To Train Your Dragon 2' premiere during the 67th Annual Cannes Film Festival on May 16, 2014 in Cannes, France. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
ZURICH, SWITZERLAND - SEPTEMBER 27: Cate Blanchett attended the official opening of the “Timeless Portofino” exhibition with photographs by Peter Lindbergh of brand ambassadors wearing IWC’s new Portofino midsize watches at the Zurich Film Festival (ZFF) on September 27, 2014 in Zurich, Switzerland. (Photo by Harold Cunningham/Getty Images for IWC)
ZURICH, SWITZERLAND - SEPTEMBER 27: Cate Blanchett attended the exclusive IWC Gala Dinner “Timeless Portofino” hosted by IWC CEO Georges Kern at the Zurich Film Festival (ZFF) on September 27, 2014 in Zurich, Switzerland. (Photo by Harold Cunningham/Getty Images for IWC)
Australian actress Cate Blanchett poses for photographers on the red carpet prior to the screening of the film 'Cinderella' presented in competition of the 65th Berlin International Film Festival Berlinale in Berlin, on February 13, 2015. AFP PHOTO / JOHN MACDOUGALL (Photo credit should read JOHN MACDOUGALL/AFP/Getty Images)
Australian actress Cate Blanchett poses for photographers on the red carpet prior to the screening of the film 'Cinderella' presented in competition of the 65th Berlin International Film Festival Berlinale in Berlin, on February 13, 2015. AFP PHOTO / ODD ANDERSEN (Photo credit should read ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images)
Australian actress Cate Blanchett (L) and British actress Lily James pose for photographers on the red carpet prior to the screening of the film 'Cinderella' presented in competition of the 65th Berlin International Film Festival Berlinale in Berlin, on February 13, 2015. AFP PHOTO / ODD ANDERSEN (Photo credit should read ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images)
Actress Cate Blanchett arrives on the red carpet for the 87th Oscars February 22, 2015 in Hollywood, California. AFP PHOTO / MARK RALSTON (Photo credit should read MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)
SANTA MONICA, CA - FEBRUARY 21: Producer John Lesher (L) and director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (R) accept Best Feature for 'Birdman' from actress Cate Blanchett (C) onstage during the 2015 Film Independent Spirit Awards at Santa Monica Beach on February 21, 2015 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 22: Actress Cate Blanchett speaks onstage during the 87th Annual Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre on February 22, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
SANTA MONICA, CA - FEBRUARY 21: Actress Cate Blanchett speaks onstage during the 2015 Film Independent Spirit Awards at Santa Monica Beach on February 21, 2015 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE
SHOW CAPTION +
HIDE CAPTION

The room laughed and applauded but Blanchett wasn't done: "But in 2015, the point should be, 'Who cares?'" she went on. "I mean, call me old fashioned, but I thought that one's job as an actor was not to present one's boring, small, microscopic universe, but to raise and expand your sense of the world and make a psychological and empathetic connection to another character's experience so that you could present something other than your own world to an audience. My own life is of no interest to anyone else. Or maybe it is," she said, raising an eyebrow to a crowd who obviously did care about her private life a lot. "I don't know. But I'm certainly not interested in putting my own thoughts and opinions up there. Why I want to be an actor, why I love to be an actor, is ... the research" — which in the case of Carol meant reading '50s erotic novels. "It's finding out other people's experiences and that youthful, intangible symbiosis in order to communicate it."

You may also be disappointed to find out that Carol is the most tasteful of lesbian romances, a far cry from the steamy and controversial rompings seen here at Cannes two years ago in Blue Is The Warmest Color. There is a long courtship, a lot of glances and touches charged with sexual tension, and when we finally see Blanchett's Carol go south on the trembling naked body of Mara's Therese, it is passionate, but not wild —a momentary release, before they put back on the fabulous period costumes that I found myself falling in love with more that the characters.

There was talk of bigger picture gay and women's rights. Blanchett pointed out how many countries around the globe still consider homosexuality illegal. "We're living in deeply conservative times and if we think otherwise we're being very foolish."

Has her comfort with nudity on screen changed over the years? "Certainly since giving birth. A lot of people see you naked in that scenario," said Blanchett. "I'm nude quite often so it wasn't a big deal for me," added Mara.

A Bangledeshi journalist who's quite a character in these press conferences and can't always articulate what he means clearly in English, began mentioning that the last time Blanchett was at Cannes was for a children's movie, last year's How To Train Your Dragon 2, and wanted to know if that fact somehow made the sex scene hard to shoot. "You mean [being] the age that I am?" asked Blanchett, confused but cheeky. He tried again: Would it be difficult to remain elegant and sophisticated after this? Blanchett paused a while, smiled, leaned into the microphone and said, simply, "No."

More to see:
Jon Hamm says he's ready to move on from 'Mad Men'
Scared bear spends week in central Louisiana neighborhood
Taylor Swift & Calvin Harris cozy up at the Billboard Music Awards
Read Full Story

People are Reading