Ron Russell is by far one of the most prolific, experienced, and professional talents in the “world of entertainment” royalty. The chic, handsome, Tony Curtis-like actor has probably had more exposure and acquaintance with the silver screen, so to speak, than anyone on the planet.
Perfecting his craft with hints from the best of the best, Jane Russell, Betty Davis, Elizabeth Taylor and yes Tony Curtis himself, Russell has been cast in every genre from Brooklyn Italian to drag queen extraordinaire.
An advocate for gay and human rights, aging actors, AIDS, and the underdog, Russell currently co-hosts the leading tv/radio webshow in the entire world with 4.5 million listeners and viewers, and has a vast fan base nationally and globally.
At 77 years old and going exceedingly strong, with his good looks and vivacious personality his hope is to become part of a new and innovative show called “Silver Foxes”, created by Stan Zimmerman one of the writers for “The Golden Girls”, the hit series that took over the world..
Ron, aside from having a successful show…. The Jimmy Star Show with Ron Russell, which is the biggest on the internet with 4.5 million viewers, you have been in show business nearly forever. What are some of the highlights of your career?
Being in the movie “That Kind Of Woman” with Sophia Loren and Tab Hunter was a highlight, which was back in 1959, and I was 19 years old. What a thrill it was at that age to meet and get to know a bit of Sophia Loren. Of course, the greatest highlight of my life was my friendship with Legendary actress and best friend Jane Russell, who I impersonated in DRAG for many years. Now did you get the connection in our names, Russell/Russell, I took her name as my stage name.
I also produced and hosted the tv show “Set The Record Straight” for Time Warner Cable. It was a conversation show with the famous legends of Hollywood such as Jane Russell, Tab Hunter, Lauren Bacall, Kay Ballard, Tony Curtis, Tippi Hedren, Cliff Robertson, and Arlene Dahl just to name a few.
As well as being in the entertainment industry, you have teamed up with celebs through your career in charitable endeavors. Can you highlight some of those?
Yes Eileen, I am the founder of “Have A Heart,” a troupe of drag queens who performed up and down the Eastern Seaboard raising money for AMFAR and The Elizabeth Taylor Foundation for Aids Research. Also, I was a great part of the movement for Gay Rights and Stonewall. I have always felt that my being gay was for a good reason, and that reason was to bring to light the fact that gay people are the same as all people.
I am a great supporter of equality for humanity.
What is your proudest moment as a gay man in the entertainment industry?
The proudest moment thus far is my marriage to Jimmy Star and our international webshow “The Jimmy Star Show With Ron Russell.” Why? Because we are the first married Gay couple to come forward in the media and I am happy to say, with over 4.5 million viewers and thousands of fans we are accepted and loved.
Can you tell us about some of the gay rights in the industry that you are currently fighting for?
I will give you the short answer. Ageism and Homophobia.
If you could be involved with any projects currently which would you choose and why?
“Silver Foxes” written and produced by Stan Zimmerman and James Berg, because they are crusaders who are fighting for the same things I am, how wonderful it is to have comrades who are in sync with me.
Now at my age, finally something is happening that will change the world’s thinking of gay people. I would so love to be a part of that show.
As a gay man what is most important to you?
RESPECT, EQUALITY, FAIRNESS, and BROTHERLY LOVE…..
Any last words?
Thank you Eileen, you are the best in a world of millions.
Follow Ron Russel on Twitter @RonRussellShow