Del Shores has been a voice for gay Southerners in the United States on the theatre stage for going on 20 years now. Best known for writing "Sordid Lives" (which has been produced locally) He is also the creator of Southern Baptist Sissies (also produced locally in Riverside a few years back). His world, delightfully tacky, profoundly moving and full of gay sunshine has moved audiences to laughter and tears for two decades. Our correspondent, Karrissa Wade caught up with the sardonic playwright recently for a little conversation. Join us after the jump for the details!
According to wikipedia, Del Shores (born December 3, 1957, in Winters, Texas) is an American film director and producer, television writer and producer, playwright and actor.
The first play Shores wrote was Daddy's Dyin': Who's Got the Will? which saw a 1987 debut in Los Angeles. The comedic play was adapted for the 1990 film Daddy's Dyin': Who's Got the Will? , Shores wrote the screenplay and executive produced the feature.
Sordid Lives Official Trailer
Perhaps Shores' best known play is his fourth, "Sordid Lives", which debuted in 1996 in Los Angeles. The comedy centered around the Texan Ingram family and touched on LGBT themes. In 1999 Shores wrote and directed the screen version of Sordid Lives. Eight years later Shores produced 12 prequel episodes of Sordid Lives: The Series which aired on American LGBT-interest cable channel Logo.
What is it like being a gay icon?
Del Shores: Every time I hear this I think:" I’m not that old, Mary". But seriously, I like the fact that I can tell stories and make a difference.
It has been a crazy journey. Can be hard and stressful sometimes you got to be careful what you say and set an example for people. I love my platform very few get to do as I do.
In your lifetime did you ever think Gay marriage would be legal?
Del Shores: Originally, no of course not. When I wrote Southern Baptist Sissies who would have though the marriage scene would be a reality. It was unheard of then at the time. Then we started seeing California, Massachusetts. Florida etc. So many brave women and men paved the way with civil unions and refusing to be considered second class citizens. Now we have SCOTUS weighing in. This will finally make a difference.
SOUTHERN BAPTIST SISSIES - Official Trailer (2013)
Will we see Brother Boy from Sordid Lives get married?
Del Shores: No comment! All I’m going to say is you will be pleasantly surprised.
What projects are you working on now?
Del Shores: A Very Sordid Wedding sequel in Dallas filming begins in May.
A Very Sordid Wedding - Fundraising Campaign - Sordid Lives Sequel:
Who has been the worst actress or actor to work with and why?
Del Shores: My first would be Judge Rhinehold . We were filming Daddies dying. He would go on rants, throwing huge temper tantrums. Finally, I had enough and just let him have it, hes amazingly talented it’s unfortunate. Thomas Hayden Church was another. He was not easy to deal with at any level. He was so mean to Debra Messing from (Will and Grace) always putting her down until her fame. She is one of the sweetest people in the business. His actions didn’t set too well. We come from the same home town area. I once told him I am ashamed our hometowns are represented by you and your behavior. People always show remorse for their behavior later but in this business it is something that can haunt you your whole career. I have been blessed to work with some of the sweetest in the business. For example Delta Burke in Sordid Lives. She had gone through the drama from Desigining Women. We were able to showcase that she was not only beautiful but talented. She was truly wonderful to work with. She carried herself amazing during a tough hurtful time.
Designing Women - They Shoot Fat Women Don't They? Delta Burke, one of the sweetest in the business, according to Del Shores.
Judge Rhinehold, in Daddies Dying Who's Got The Will? (1990). Judge Reinhold, was one of the biggest jerks in Hollywood to work with, according to Del.
On a final note, I found Del Shores was charming, witty, and just charismatic. Filming begins in May for A Very Gay Sequel. (Rumors are you just might see a local face grace the screen.)
About Karrissa Wade
Karrissa Wade is one of the most accomplished and well known drag performers in Jville. Active in politics, theatre, art and the performance and pageant circuit, she has been the host of countless charity events and benefits, and has been a correspondent for MetroJacksonville since 2008.
You can catch her regular performances at Hamburger Marys or connect with her on Facebook.