Photography by Danielle Levitt
Don’t count Ellis—author of Less Than Zero, American Psycho, and Lunar Park — among those who greeted the Supreme Court’s DOMA decision as a wildly celebratory moment. For the famously outspoken novelist and screenwriter, it was more like a wildly overdue decision. “The whole thing bugged me,” he says. “I’m old school — like, ‘Why didn’t this happen 15 years ago?’ So, great, finally! But really? Really? I also have the added burden of being from the super-pessimistic Gen X, who just doesn’t do celebration really well.”
That spiky irascibility has engendered a compulsively readable Twitter account, on which his refreshing honesty has become a lightning rod for haters (including GLAAD, which disinvited him from attending their media awards in L.A. earlier this year). After penning the script for this summer’s The Canyons, Paul Schrader’s film noir starring Lindsay Lohan, he’s now working on the big-screen adaptation of 50 Shades of Grey. Ellis shrugs off the outrage that usually follows in his wake.
“Who gets upset by a tweet?” he asks. “What do they look like? What happens the moment they see the tweet? Does their face crumple? Do they, like, start biting their nails and run out of the room?” Answers via Twitter, please.
Photographed at his home in Los Angeles on July 25, 2013