Rock Hudson & Judy Garland Secrets Beyond the Grave
By Jerry Portwood
Rock Hudson's wife hired private dick Fred Otash—whom Mike Wallace once called "the most amoral" man he'd ever interviewed—to record her conversations with her closeted husband back in 1958 and now The Hollywood Reporter has obtained those files that reveal the secrets of Hudson, along with JFK and Marilyn. Oh, and Judy's stash. As they explain, Colleen Otash, the detective's daughter, and her business partner Manfred Westphal handed over the records that fill 11 boxes that have been hidden inside a storage unit in the San Fernando Valley. We're sure this will supply enough material for books and books of eager voyeurs.
But back to that Rock Hudson scuttlebutt. As reported by THR:
On January 21, 1958, Rock Hudson's wife confronted him, demanding to know if he was gay and grilling the actor about a Rorschach test he had taken. "You told me you saw thousands of butterflies and also snakes," she said "[A therapist] told me in my analysis that butterflies mean femininity and snakes represent that male penis. I'm not condemning you, but it seems that as long as you recognize your problem, you would want to do something about it." She also complained about "your great speed with me, sexually. Are you that fast with boys?"
"Well, it's a physical conjunction [sic]," replied Rock, then 32. "Boys don't fit. So, this is why it lasts longer."
Added Phyllis: "Everyone knows that you were picking up boys off the street shortly after we were married and have continued to do so, thinking that being married would cover up for you."
"I have never picked up any boys on the street," Rock insisted. "I have never picked up any boys in a bar, never. I have never picked up any boys, other than to give them a ride."
And that's just the tip of the iceberg. Although novelist James Ellroy and others have called much of the veracity of Otash's claims into question, his daughter wanted others to see the notes for themselves to back up his often outlandish claims. There's stuff on Marilyn Monroe wanting a tiny microphone to hide in her bra. Otash allegedly listened in while she was having sex with President Kennedy. And when she was dying in her apartment alone. Oh, and he also boasted of having an affair with a transsexual communist named Miss Bonvillain. Even if it's not true, doesn't it make for a great story?
According to the Otash files, when he was spying on Judy Garland, he befriended little Liza Minnelli to find Judy's hidden stash of pills (Minnelli declined to comment, apparently, when THR wanted to know if it was true). As Otash writes:
"I gathered up all the bottles and locked them up. Then I began the search for pills. You wouldn't believe the cleverness of that woman in stashing her drugs so nobody could find them. And there were all kinds. Uppers, downers and some I didn't even recognize. They were stuffed into a hole she'd cut under the mattress and in rubber fingers tied at the top with the string tied again around the faucet of the washbasin. The pills were down in the crook of the pipe, and when she wanted them she just pulled them up by the almost invisible string. I dumped all that junk down the toilet and flushed it away."
Want more morbid details? See the transcript of Hudson's convo here.