Is Johnny Knoxville the Gayest Straight Guy Ever?
By Will Doig
During the filming of A Dirty Shame�a film credited for bringing gay bears into the collective American consciousness�Knoxville developed a thing for bear culture and tried to get himself on the cover of American Grizzly magazine. �They said they don�t do celebrity endorsements,� he laments. �I was so angry and hurt. I asked John, �Do you have a number for the editor?� But he didn�t want me to grovel.� Instead, Knoxville tattooed a bear on his arm with Grrr! written across its belly. Then he bought all the MTV executives subscriptions to American Grizzly, �whether they liked it or not.�
Which pretty much sums up the Jackass mentality. Its devoted fan base knows that not only is Jackass really juvenile, it�s also perceived as really, really gay, a quality that Knoxville appears to relish. �A few different publications gave us awards for, uh, gayness,� he says. �After this next movie comes out we might be looking at some lifetime achievement awards.� The franchise is essentially Girls Gone Wild for homos, an amateurish production where jockish straight boys get naked and, as Knoxville says, �wrestle around and hurt each other. There�s ass play, giggling. It just comes real natural.� So natural that while shooting Wildboyz�the Jackass crew�s current MTV venture, which is like National Geographic with G-strings and injuries��they got some notes from above saying, �OK, guys, this is almost too gay. Can you tone down the gayness?� And so they tried to make it not as gay, but then it just got gayer,� Knoxville says. �So it seems we are no longer driving the ship.�
Pick up the September issue of Out to read more about Johnny and Jackass: Number Two.