Excerpt 2 from Michael Kearns’ “The Truth is Bad Enough”

This is the second of three excerpted chapters from Michael Kearns’ just-released autobiography, “The Truth is Bad Enough: What Became of the Happy Huster?” now available on Amazon (you can read my interview with Michael here). It’s an often entertaining, often cringe-inducing, always honest look at a life that makes you say, If there was no Michael Kearns, somebody would have had to invent him. – Mark McNease/Editor

“We are all lucky to still have Michael Kearns with us,” Sir Ian McKellen says “now recording his private and public story with an honesty and humor that put most other show-biz autobiographies to shame.” THE TRUTH IS BAD ENOUGH, What Became of The Happy Hustler? traverses more than a half of century—from Kearns’ roles as ribald party boy to impassioned artist-activist to doting father. From the Seventies’ sexual revolution to the gay parenting boom of the Twenty First Century, Michael Kearns has defined nearly a half a century of American life: culturally, politically, and sexually. In many instances, he was not only at the forefront of the historical milestones, he created them.”  From the description for “The Truth is Bad Enough: What Became of the Happy Hustler?”


“Mr. Hudson is suffering from anorexia nervosa,” Ross Hunter lied to the media, standing in the shadows of the ailing actor’s estate. That announcement—made with a straight face, as it were—sent shock waves through my system, giving birth to my role as an activist. The degree of anger I experienced would motivate me for years to come.

Hunter was the director of Rock’s greatest romps with Doris Day (Pillow Talk and Lover, Come Back) and obviously took his job—to make Hudson believably heterosexual, onscreen and off—with somber seriousness.