Jack Cullen

Blood, Sweat and Twinks

In his first ever interview, 25-year-old Gaetan Vettier chats about losing his innocence on the big screen...

Next month sees the BFI's gay film fest kick off, officially known as the London Lesbian & Gay Film Festival. There's been talk this year of changing the name. Some think it should include a nod to the trans community. Others think it needs to be a bit catchier and snappier. Meanwhile, there are films to watch...

As ever, the programme is stuffed with treats. Divine, David Bowie, Spanish romps, Asian thrillers, Swedish boys sharing baths, black and white re-runs, cutting edge documentaries and of course the latest from James Franco's on-screen gay tourism endeavours. Scene icon Jonny Woo is even giving a live performance at one of the festival's free events.

There's been much talk around one of the festivals short films called "Little Gay Boy chrisT is dead" (see what they did there?) Directed by Antony Hickling, the YouTube trailer is pretty radical:

You can see the film at the BFI on the 22nd and 23rd of March. But first things first, who is that hot boy getting tied up in the trailer? He's called Gaetan and he has a rapidly growing gay fan base (form an orderly queue please) in France. We caught up with the sexy Gaetan for a chat:

Hi Gaetan! So this is your first appearance on the big screen. What acting have you done in the past?

Yes it is. And what an experience! Especially acting in a film as radical as this one. I auditioned for a short film called Birth 2 four years ago and have since acted in all of Antony’s films. However this is my first "big role". This is actually my first interview so thanks Gay Times, you guys are gorgeous! I've acted in several theatre plays but I'm still at drama school in France.

There's a lot of nudity and a strong sexual current running through the film. Would you say Little Gay Boy is soft porn?

When Antony offered me the role, I was scared by that part of the work: me, naked, playing rough submission scenes! You see my dick, there's violence, there's sex, there are SM performances etc. But is it "porn”? The images are very artistic, I know that Antony is very influenced by painting and this shows in the film. Also the use of Butoh dance adds to the artistic explosion and makes the work a film about sexuality with sex but not actual porn. Antony is a great artist and he has this brilliant ability of mixing violence, humour and gentleness in a political and artistic gesture. I agreed to play the role because I knew it would be a huge challenge for me as an actor. I also knew that I'd be proud to have worked on such a cutting edge project. An actor's job is to take risks.

What's Antony Hickling like to work with?

It's always exciting to work with Antony. On Little Gay Boy, he wrote a first draught and using the written text as a starting point we spent a lot of time rehearsing, mainly improvising. He then rewrote the final draught. As Antony is also an actor he understands what actors need. He knows the right buttons to press. He's not strict, but although he's quite rock'n'roll he's also very precise. He knows how to direct very sensitive material and was truly respectful of my personal boundaries. He had a very clear idea of the images he wanted to compose.

The film is reminiscent of Derek Jarman's work. Did you research him for the role at all?

I didn’t know of Derek Jarman before working with Antony but I know that he’s a very important influence on Antony's work. We talked a lot about Pasolini's "Theoreme", Joao Pedro Rodrigues' "O Fantasma" and Antony had a lot of other references. He didn't want me to get into aesthetics too much though, he wanted my character to be "a regular 2012 young guy".

One of the big names at this year's gay film festival is James Franco, with his new film Interior. Leather Bar. Do you have an opinion on James Franco?

When I grow up I want to be James Franco ! He's great. And Interior. Leather Bar: WOW !!!

This film seems quite hellish and satanic. What's your idea of paradise Gaeter?

A place I'd love to visit with you, and a place that I'll be visiting in the next and last part of the Triptych, Holy Thursday - The Last Supper.

Sounds fun. Let's see if they take reservations.

Watch Gaeter in all his glory at the BFI next month. TICKETS HERE (search for "Queer Provocations" of "Little Gay Boy")

You can email suggestions and ideas for the LLGFF festival's new name to the BFI on

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