Thursday, December 16, 2010

divine - you think you're a man

Divine (October 19, 1945 – March 7, 1988), born Harris Glenn Milstead, was an American actor, singer and drag queen. Described by People magazine as the "Drag Queen of the Century," Divine often performed female roles in both cinema and theater and also appeared in women's wear in musical performances. Even so, he considered himself to be a character actor and performed male roles in a number of his later films. He was often associated with independent filmmaker John Waters and starred in ten of Waters's films, usually in a leading role. Concurrent with his acting career, he also had a successful career as a disco singer during the 1980s, at one point being described as "the most successful and in-demand disco performer in the world."

Born in Baltimore, Maryland, into a conservative family, he became involved with John Waters and his acting troupe, the Dreamlanders, in the mid-1960s and starred in a number of Waters's early films such as Mondo Trasho, Multiple Maniacs, Pink Flamingos and Female Trouble. These films have since become cult classics. In the 1970s, Milstead made the transition to theater and appeared in a number of productions, including Women Behind Bars and The Neon Woman, while continuing to star in such films as Polyester, Lust in the Dust and Hairspray.

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