In Gays: Dying for an Oscar, Gold Derby spells out the rules for winning an Oscar in a gay role: "Gay roles can win Oscars but only if the characters, who must die hideous deaths, are portrayed by straight people." Among the Oscar-winners included in their round up: Charlize Theron ("Monster," death by lethal injection), Best Actress, 2003; Tom Hanks ("Philadelphia," death by AIDS), Best Actor, 1993; Hilary Swank ("Boys Don't Cry," death by gun, knife), Best Actress, 1999; and Sean Penn ("Milk," death by gun), Best Actor, 2008. Colin Firth was of course nominated for "A Single Man" but lost (was death by heart attack not painful enough?). Here's the rest.
This gives Leonardo DiCaprio a leg up in the best actor race for "J. Edgar." SPOILER ALERT: And now we know why we're calling "Beginners" star Christopher Plummer, 81, who both comes out and dies of cancer, as the frontrunner for the supporting actor Oscar.