As Matt Tyrnauer’s sexy documentary “Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood” hits theaters in New York and L.A., returning gregarious 95-year-old Scotty Bowers to the Big Apple for the first time since the ’60s, documentarian Matt Tyrnauer and his producing partner Corey Reeser of Altimeter Films have pacted with Fox Searchlight to produce a biopic about the notorious gay matchmaker’s unique point-of-view on the sex life of Hollywood movie stars. No director or writer are yet attached.
Some would call the ex-Marine a pimp. The tousle-haired author of scandalous 2012 memoir “Full Service: My Adventures in Hollywood and the Secret Sex Lives of the Stars” put gay people together via a Hollywood gas station for rendezvous with celluloid luminaries, from Charles Laughton to Walter Pidgeon. Of course, Bowers wrote his Hollywood tell-all after the marquee names were all dead.
While it isn’t news that director George Cukor (“The Philadelphia Story”) was gay, or that Cary Grant and Randolph Scott were more than roommates, there’s more resistance to the notion that Katharine Hepburn loved her companion Phyllis Wilbourn for decades and then encouraged her many biographers to perpetuate the myth of her romance with Spencer Tracy.
In the documentary, the late Liz Smith goes on the record for the first time to confirm that Katharine Hepburn had lesbian relationships. With Spencer Tracy, Bowers is the primary source for his (usually drunken) bisexuality.
Bowers himself suggested a fiction film was in the works on Twitter, asking readers to supply casting ideas. The responses range from “Mindhunter” and “Hamilton” star Jonathan Groff and “Call Me by Your Name” duo Armie Hammer and Timothee Chalamet, to established marquee names Ryan Gosling, Chris Pine, Matt Damon, Justin Timberlake, and Bradley Cooper and rising young actors Dylan Minnette, Ansel Elgort, Tom Holland, Darren Criss, and Lucas Hedges.
— Scotty Bowers (@ScottyBowers) August 5, 2018
Tyrnauer moved from editing and writing at Vanity Fair to directing the Oscar-shortlisted documentary “Valentino: The Last Emperor,” after which he founded Altimeter Films with producer Reeser. Besides “Scotty and the Secret Life of Hollywood,” they produced urban planner biodoc “Citizen Jane: Battle for the City” (2016), A&E Sundance debut “Studio 54” (October) as well as an upcoming non-fiction expose of New York lawyer Roy Cohn and Apple’s ten-part design series, “Home.”
And after years of development limbo after HBO won an initial bidding war, Vanity Fair’s “Once Upon a Time in Beverly Hills,” the story of Johnny Carson’s “The Tonight Show” producer Fred de Cordova’s luxury-loving widow Janet, scripted by Jon Hoffman (“Looking,” “Grace and Frankie”), is finally getting made with Ted Hope at Amazon Studios.