Guillaume Depardieu Took His Licks

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Actor Guillaume Depardieu died earlier this year at age 37 from complications due to pneumonia, and I've waited a tasteful amount of time before I dredged up the following column item I did on him in 2000 as a tribute. As you'll learn from our bawdy encounter, he wasn't a dick, though he definitely had one. In fact, he's currently buried six feet (and seven inches) under. Bless you, Guillaume.

"La Dolce Musto" column, 2002:

The premiere of Pola X was running late because of a technical problem, but the film's star, Guillaume Depardieu, was feeling no pain at a jaunty little bar down the block. I hunted Guillaume down and found that, though he looks like Julian Sands crossed with Jude Law, he clearly has the insouciance of daddy Gérard Depardieu, especially after a few wines. Is this his first major role? I asked, by way of an icebreaker. "Everything is major," Guillaume said, très pouting. All righty, then, does he like New York? I wondered feebly. "No," he blurted, stubbornly refusing to elaborate. "Well, there's no more poverty here," I whimpered, and Guillaume shot back, "What about spiritual poverty?"

Before we started picking apart my impoverished soul, I switched gears and asked about Pola X, the arty moodfest based on a downbeat Herman Melville novel. "It's very sad," Guillaume said. "You shouldn't stay. Don't look at it!" I was starting to like the guy, who at least wasn't laying on the promotional bull you usually get at these events. I told him I'd heard that the flick is sexy, and he cooed, "Yes, very sex [sic]. You will see my dick. Be kind with me˜I'm a poor little French."

What came out of my mouth next is not something I'm terribly proud of, but I was feeling a bit giddy from the tension of the moment and absolutely couldn't help myself. "Can I lick it?" I asked as a joke, fully realizing that this was my reportorial Waterloo and I might even get punched out for it. Even more surprisingly, Guillaume lit up like the Eiffel Tower and laughingly said, "I'd like that! Lick me, please! At the party!" What an accommodating guy! You certainly never hear that kind of talk from the Cruises and Travoltas. Alas, I never made it to the bash because the movie was indeed sad and the appendage was truly, well, French. Maybe I'll stick to Melville's other big work, Moby . . . you know.

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