Anne Heche – Photo: Mingle Media TV, via Wikimedia
Anne Heche says that her relationship with Ellen DeGeneres in 1997 cost her acting opportunities, and, as a result, she lost potentially millions of dollars she could have earned if she had been cast in more roles.
In a pre-recorded segment for Dancing with the Stars, from which she was recently eliminated, Heche recounted how her involvement in a same-sex relationship was poorly received in Hollywood.
Far from being embraced, Heche claims 20th Century Fox told her to keep her relationship with DeGeneres under wraps.
“My story is a story that created change in the world, moved the needle for equal rights forward, when I fell in love with Ellen DeGeneres,” Heche said in a pre-recorded segment.
She met DeGeneres at a party for Vanity Fair and began dating her in 1997, and — against the objections of executives at 20th Century Fox — took DeGeneres as her date to the premiere of the disaster movie Volcano, in which she co-starred with Tommy Lee Jones and Don Cheadle.
“I had told them I was taking Ellen as my date and I was told if I took Ellen I would lose my Fox contract,” Heche said. “At that moment, she took my hand and said, ‘Do what they say,’ and I said, ‘No thanks.’ I took Ellen to the premiere and I was ushered out before the movie even ended, and was told I was not allowed to go to my own after-party for fear that they would get pictures of me with a woman.”
The couple remained together for about three-and-a-half years, but Heche said the relationship took a toll on her career — even though DeGeneres had warned her that studios might react unfavorably to her, reports Louisa Ballhaus for SheKnows.
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