Liberace’s ex-lover and subject of hit HBO film says he has lots more to tell
The man behind the story that led to HBO’s hit movie “Behind the Candelabra” says he’s ecstatic the film is a success and there’s even more to come in his story of intrigue.
Scott Thorson, whose book detailing his relationship with Liberace was the basis of the film, tells KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson that a second book is on the horizon.
“The second book is going to be out in the next eight weeks. It’s going to be called ‘Shattering of the Candelabra.'”
Thorson’s relationship with Liberace began when he was 16 and from there, his life was entirely different.
“You have to understand where I was coming from. Here’s a kid who’s been in and out of foster homes and then thrown into the wealth and the glamour and the glitz of Liberace,” says Thorson. “I was just so overwhelmed by his wealth and his stardom that I thought, God what a great break I had here.”
His experience living with Liberace in his 17,000 square foot home with millions of dollars of antiques was anything but typical. One of the more exceptional parts of his tale has to do with Liberace’s desire to have Thorson look more like him.
“It was a fetish and to this day I still don’t understand it,” says Thorson. “He flew the doctor in because he wanted some work done on me, but at the time I didn’t know it. I thought he was just coming in to take a look at Lee’s face and then Liberace goes into the bedroom, he takes this big portrait off the bedroom wall and he says, ‘I want you to create Scott to look more like my son.’ My jaw dropped down, and they were talking about raising my cheek bones, nose job, chin implants.”
But Thorson says he was so taken in by the lifestyle and relationship, he was willing to do anything to please him. Liberace eventually legally adopted Scott, who was 48 years his junior, so it wouldn’t look suspicious for the two men to live together.
“He wanted me to be his adopted son and he didn’t want anybody to know that I was his lover. Here I’m walking around with a million dollars worth of jewelry, all these furs, all these cars, so he threw the press off that way, then he legally adopted me,” says Thorson. Liberace went to the trouble of adopting him, Thorson explains, because in that era press reporting on the affair would have ruined Liberace’s career.
Matt Damon plays Thorson in the film, opposite Michael Douglas’ Liberace. Thorson says the two do a fantastic job, and the whole crew are the toast of the town after the film’s success.
“It’s the biggest hit since 2004 that HBO has had,” says Thorson. “My book is now number five on the New York Times bestseller list. It’s just blowing my mind. I’m the hottest thing in show business right now. I am so thrilled to death.”
The film’s been such a success he says they’re hoping to do another film project with his second book. He says there’s much more to his crazy life, including affairs with other famous celebrities including pop star Michael Jackson. While some might doubt his claims, Thorson says it isn’t made up. “Everything that I say is the truth. I can back everything up.”
Watch the trailer for “Behind the Candelabra”