- Category : Actor
- Type : MGE
- Profile : 2/4 - Hermit / Opportunist
- Definition : Split - Small (6,12,45)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Planning 2
Rupert James Hector Everett (born 29 May 1959) is an English actor. He first came to public attention in 1981, when he was cast in Julian Mitchell's play and subsequent film Another Country (1984) as an openly gay pupil at an English public school in the 1930s. He has since appeared in many other films, including My Best Friend's Wedding, An Ideal Husband, The Next Best Thing and the Shrek sequels.
Everett was born in Burnham Deepdale, Norfolk, to Major Anthony Michael Everett (1921–2009), who worked in business and served in the British Army, and wife Sara (née Maclean). His maternal grandfather, Vice Admiral Sir Hector Charles Donald Maclean, was a nephew of Scottish military man Hector Lachlan Stewart MacLean, who received the Victoria Cross. His maternal grandmother, Opre Vyvyan, was a descendant of the baronets Vyvyan of Trelowarren and the German Freiherr (Baron) von Schmiedern. He has a brother, Simon Anthony Cunningham Everett (born 1956). Everett was brought up as a Roman Catholic.
From the age of seven, Everett was educated at Farleigh School, Hampshire, and later was educated by Benedictine monks at Ampleforth College, Yorkshire; he left school at 16 and ran away to London to become an actor. In order to support himself, he worked as a prostitute for drugs and money as he later admitted to US magazine in 1997. After being dismissed from the Central School of Speech and Drama (University of London) for insubordination, he travelled to Scotland and got a job at the Citizens' Theatre in Glasgow.
Everett's break came in 1981 at the Greenwich Theatre and later West End production of Another Country, playing a gay schoolboy opposite Kenneth Branagh, followed by a film version in 1984 with Cary Elwes and Colin Firth. Following on with 1985's Dance With a Stranger, Everett began to develop a promising film career until he co-starred with Bob Dylan in the huge flop Hearts of Fire (1987). Around the same time, Everett recorded and released an album of pop songs entitled Generation of Loneliness. Despite being managed by the largely successful pop svengali Simon Napier-Bell (who also managed Marc Bolan, launched and managed the band Japan, and steered Wham! to international fame), the public didn't take to his change in direction. The shift was short-lived, and he only returned to pop indirectly by providing backing vocals for his friend Madonna many years later, on her cover of "American Pie" and on the track "They Can't Take That Away from Me" on Robbie Williams' Swing When You're Winning in 2001.
In 1989, Everett moved to Paris, writing a novel, Hello, Darling, Are You Working?, and coming out as gay, a disclosure which he has said may well have damaged his career. Returning to the public eye in The Comfort of Strangers (1990), several films of variable success followed. The Italian comics character Dylan Dog, created by Tiziano Sclavi, is graphically inspired by him. Everett, in turn, later appeared in an adaptation of a novel based on Sclavi's novel, Dellamorte Dellamore. In 1995 he released a second novel, The Hairdressers of St. Tropez.
His career was revitalised by his award-winning performance in My Best Friend's Wedding (1997), playing Julia Roberts's gay friend. In 1999, he played Madonna's best friend in The Next Best Thing (he also sang backup on her cover of "American Pie", which is on the film's soundtrack). He has since appeared in a number of high-profile film roles, often playing leads. Also in 1999 he starred as the villainous Sanford Scolex/Dr. Claw in Disney's Inspector Gadget with Matthew Broderick.
For the 21st century, Everett has decided to write again. He has been a Vanity Fair contributing editor and wrote a film screenplay on playwright Oscar Wilde's final years, for which he seeks funding. In 2006, he published a memoir, Red Carpets and Other Banana Skins. In it he revealed he had a six-year affair with British television presenter Paula Yates. "I am mystified by my heterosexual affairs – but then I am mystified by most of my relationships," he wrote. Although he is sometimes described as bisexual as opposed to homosexual, at a radio show with Jonathan Ross, he described his heterosexual affairs as resulting from adventurousness: "I was basically adventurous, I think I wanted to try everything" and in an interview on This Morning he simply described himself as homosexual, making a joke of any suggestion he might find a woman attractive.
Since then, Everett has participated in public activities (leading the 2007 Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras), played a double role in the film St. Trinian's, and has appeared on TV several times (as a contestant in the special Comic Relief Does The Apprentice, as a presenter at Live Earth and as guest host at Channel 4 show The Friday Night Project among others), but has made much news for making shocking comments and remarks at interviews that have caused public outrage.
In 2009, Everett told British newspaper The Observer that he wished he had never come out of the closet as he feels that it hurt his career and advises younger actors not to:
“The fact is that you could not be, and still cannot be, a 25-year-old homosexual trying to make it in the British film business or the American film business or even the Italian film business. It just doesn't work and you're going to hit a brick wall at some point. You're going to manage to make it roll for a certain amount of time, but at the first sign of failure they'll cut you right off... Honestly, I would not advise any actor necessarily, if he was really thinking of his career, to come out.”
In May 2007, he delivered one of the eulogies at the funeral of fashionista Isabella Blow, his friend since they were in their teens. He currently lives in London.
In recent years, Everett has returned to his acting roots appearing in several theatre productions; He made his Broadway debut in 2009 at the Shubert Theatre to good critical review, performing in a Noël Coward play, Blithe Spirit, starring alongside Angela Lansbury, Christine Ebersole and Jayne Atkinson, directed by Michael Blakemore. He was also expected to tour several Italian cities during the 2008–09 winter season in another Noël Coward play, Private Lives (performed in Italian, which he speaks fluently), playing Elyot to Italian actress Asia Argento's Amanda. However, production was cancelled and the play never opened. During the summer of 2010 he played in a revival of Pygmalion as Professor Henry Higgins next to English actress Honeysuckle Weeks, with Stephanie Cole in the role of the Professor's mother, at the Chichester Festival Theatre and reprised this role in May 2011, at the Garrick Theatre in London's West End, starring alongside Diana Rigg as Professor Higgins mother and Kara Tointon as Eliza.
As for television projects, Everett has presented Channel 4 documentaries, one on Romantic poet Lord Byron's travels, broadcast in July 2009 and another on British explorer Sir Richard Burton. In July 2010, Everett was featured in the popular family history programme Who Do You Think You Are?
He also has a part in the comedy film Wild Target, starring Bill Nighy.
In 2012 he starred in the TV screen adaptation of Parade's End with Benedict Cumberbatch.
As of September 2012, Everett is starring as Oscar Wilde in the stage play The Judas Kiss, at London's Hampstead Theatre and in tours throughout the UK.