We don’t have to tell you that Sigourney Weaver is a lesbian icon thanks, in large part, to her legendary portrayal of Ripley in the “Alien” franchise.
And what do the best lesbian icons do? They tap into that lesbian icon instinct whenever necessary — sometimes to determine if a character of theirs just might be queer.
After all, she was literally born for this kind of thing: Weaver’s birthday, Oct. 8, is the same day as International Lesbian Day.
“That’s so cool,” Weaver responded gleefully when Pride Source acknowledged that those two events fall on the same day. “How could I not know that?”
What the actress did know was that Virginia, the character she plays in her new film “Call Jane,” whom she calls a “force of nature,” had a history of preferring women over men. Just chalk it up to that lesbian icon superpower of hers.
“I just had this instinct that she had kind of had it with men for a long time, and it was something she embraced,” Weaver said, adding: “I know it would make Virginia really happy to think that my birthday was on International Lesbian Day.”
In the film, set in the 1960s, Virginia leads the Jane Collective, a pre-Roe underground abortion network. It wouldn’t be a longshot to think that Virginia also stood up for herself and her queer friends against the cops during the Stonewall Riots — she’s got fight in her, and she won’t back down until she and the people she loves are safe, protected and cared for.
“I certainly was inspired by reading about The Janes, and I think the lesbian part of her, just to me, came from the script,” Weaver told Pride Source. “It just made sense to me. The more I thought about Virginia, I felt like she made so many decisions leading her to the point at which we meet her.”
In “Call Jane,” Weaver stars alongside Elizabeth Banks, who plays Joy, a pregnant housewife with a heart condition that threatens her life in childbirth. Through the Janes, Joy meets Virginia and the two join arms in helping other women gain abortion access.
“I love that Joy, who’s kind of conservative and straight, and Virginia strike up this friendship where they really see each other and they really start to inspire each other,” Weaver said.
She added that, “I love that the Janes include so many people, so many different preferences, so many different pronouns probably, although they didn’t say them back in that day.”
Meanwhile, is Ripley actually queer? She’s not queer or straight, according to Weaver, who actually has a very practical explanation for how the heroine identifies, given all the alien-fighting she did: “Certainly by doing the last one [“Alien: Resurrection”], I had embraced that I think that Ripley was almost too busy to have a sexual orientation.”