Lily Tomlin: ‘My mother would have died. Literally. If she’d lived to see me come out.’

Lily Tomlin

Lily Tomlin Matt Sayles, Invision (AP)

Legendary actress Lily Tomlin claims her mom would “literally” have died if she’d come out as gay — so she waited until she was dead to do it.

She said: “My mother would have died. Literally. If she’d lived to see me come out. Bless her heart, she was Southern, basically fundamentalist, but she was very witty and sweet and kind and she adored Jane. She died 10 years ago. She was 91. So that was always kind of a dilemma for me.”

Speaking to The Telegraph, Tomlin admits that earlier on in her career, she would immediately reject scripts that implied “thoughtless things about women”.

“They sent me two or three Neil Simon scripts over the years,” she says. “When you’re first in the business you’re so innocent and free, the script would literally leap out of my hands into the trash can. Then afterward you get to know more and more people and you make more compromises.”

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