Anne Heche: ‘I haven’t spoken to Ellen in years. I’d listen to the people who have’

anne heche warburton

Anne Heche covers the September issue of Mr. Warburton, a magazine I guess we’re all supposed to pretend we’ve heard of before now. Anne has a reason for appearing on the cover – she’s promoting The Vanished, a film she did with Thomas Jane. She and Tom Jane are together now, Anne basically left her husband as soon as she and Jane connected. They’ve actually known each other for more than a decade, and when we found out they were a couple, I wondered if they fooled around back in the day. We still don’t know. Anyway, this interview isn’t notable because of any of her current relationship tea. It’s notable because she talks about her ex-lover Ellen DeGeneres and all of the stories about how Ellen is terrible to staffers. Some highlights:

Getting together with Thomas Janes years after they met: “It took us quite a few years to work together again after Hung, and I’m glad we waited. And it took us 50 years to fall in love—I guess we had some work to do.”

She was escorted out of the Volcano premiere in 1997: “I was told by Fox Studio executives that if I brought Ellen to the premiere, my contract would be terminated. I brought Ellen despite those threats, and we were escorted out of the theater before the lights came on by security and not allowed to attend the premiere party because they did not want any photos of us together.”

Harrison Ford & Alec Baldwin had her back: At the height of the media scrutiny for her relationship with Ellen, Anne was in talks to star with Harrison Ford in Six Days, Seven Nights. Harrison insisted to the studio that Anne be his co-star. He called her on the phone to say, “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn who you are f–king. Let’s make the best romantic comedy anyone has ever seen!” Alec Baldwin also stood up for her by insisting that she be his co-star on Broadway in Twentieth Century, in which Anne received a 2004 Tony nomination for her role as Lily Garland.

On the rumors about Ellen’s toxic work environment: “I haven’t spoken to Ellen in years. I’d listen to the people who have. If I’m standing someplace and I don’t like what’s going on there and I stay there, it’s my fault. So what are the actions that got me there and why can’t I get out of it easily if that’s not something that I want to be engaged in? Ellen is standing where she walks, and that is hers to continue that journey. Our time was a beautiful part of my life and one that I wear with honor. I was a part of a revolution that created social change, and I could not have done that without falling in love with her.”

[From Mr. Warburton Magazine]

I… what?? “If I’m standing someplace and I don’t like what’s going on there and I stay there, it’s my fault.” No. It’s not. People stay in bad situations for a variety of reasons and staying doesn’t make it the victim’s fault. WTF? I don’t understand that whole section – “I haven’t spoken to Ellen in years. I’d listen to the people who have.” We literally are listening to all of people who are telling their stories about how awful and unkind Ellen is and how she’s created this toxic work environment on her show. “Ellen is standing where she walks, and that is hers to continue that journey.” A sentence which has no meaning…? Nice about Alec Baldwin and Harrison Ford though.

Neon Presents Los Angeles Premiere Of "Parasite"

Cover courtesy of Mr. Warburton, additional photos courtesy of WENN.

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58 Responses to “Anne Heche: ‘I haven’t spoken to Ellen in years. I’d listen to the people who have’”

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  1. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    And that’s how you expertly ride a fence.

  2. PPP says:

    I might be wrong, but I think she’s saying Ellen was standing in the place where she was and if she didn’t like the things going on around her (as she purports), why didn’t she change them? Because she follows it up with Ellen is standing where she walks?

    But hey, talking like Marianne Williamson seems like a great way to get out of dealing with uncomfortable questions!

    • Renee says:

      I read it the same way you did.

    • lucy2 says:

      That could be, but it could also be taken as “if you aren’t happy working there, leave”, which is not a luxury most people have, especially right now. Hopefully that’s not what she meant.

      Also, I somehow missed the whole thing about her and Thomas Jane!

    • AMM says:

      That’s how I read it too.

    • superashes says:

      Me too, I thought she was saying Ellen was responsible, even if she didn’t like what was happening, because she was in the situation and chose to let it continue.

    • Otaku fairy says:

      That’s how I read it too.

    • osito says:

      Word salad extraordinaire, but that’s exactly how I read it, too. She’s most likely trying to say that this is entirely Ellen’s problem to deal with, but because of the way she chose to phrase it, it could easily be interpreted as also blaming the people who have stepped forward about mistreatment.

    • osito says:

      Word salad extraordinaire, but that’s exactly how I read it, too. She’s most likely trying to say that this is entirely Ellen’s problem to deal with, but because of the way she chose to phrase it, it could easily be interpreted as also blaming the people who have stepped forward about mistreatment.

  3. truthSF says:

    Uhhh….is she spacing out again?!😬

    Edit: reading MABS & PPP posts just put her comments in context for me.

  4. Ann says:

    I have the same feelings Kaiser has about Laura Dern towards Anne Hache. I have never cared for her as an actress or celebrity. She’s too much of an amalgam of other actresses that do it better and her weirdness doesn’t translate to coolness.

    Lol at 6 Days, 7 Nights being “the best romantic comedy anyone has ever seen!” I’m so sure Harrison Ford said that.

    • Case says:

      LOL the thought of Harrison Ford being that enthusiastic about anything cracks me up. She’s definitely embellishing.

    • bluemoonhorse says:

      Harrison Ford was reportedly extremely upset about her coming out during this movie. And the movie was a huge flop. But I guess Ford has to pretend to be woke via a surrogate or she has to pretend he accepted her or something.

      • Teresa says:

        I actually really liked the movie back in the day and if it was on I’d happily watch now. I can’t think of any fun light hearted movies that aren’t panned by critics and a flop. I’ll watch fluffy romcoms like the critically hated Mamma Mia 2 any day over the likes of Parasite.

      • tcbc says:

        That’s a great insight, Teresa. (Although I disagree with you about Parasite, I loved that film.)

        Oftentimes movies targeted at women are unfairly panned or criticized because the mostly male critics can’t stand that something isn’t made just for them. I’m not saying these films are works of genius (like Parasite), but they are middling movies that are easy to watch, like most superhero movies. Sometimes people want that.

        Male-targeted mediocre superhero and action films should get the same level of scrutiny as female-targeted romantic comedies.

      • FilmTurtle says:

        It wasn’t a “huge flop” at all. Urban legend. It grossed $165m on a $70m budget. Most movies never earn back their budget; it wasn’t a runaway hit, no, but not a flop.

    • Mumbles says:

      Yeah, I’m with you. I remember her badmouthing her ex-husband and father of her young child on Letterman. Thought it was very selfish and unhealthy given that he was the father of her son, who might some day see the clip or hear about it from a mean person.

      • holly hobby says:

        So she left James Tupper for Thomas Jane? Wasn’t Thomas Jane married to Patricia Arquette? I remember James left his wife for Anne when they were in Men in Trees.

        Yeah I remember way way back about Anne!

  5. Jules says:

    Impressive way of not saying much and yet I still feel the burn. She looks great in that bottom photo, not heavily made up. Kinda messy and naturally beautiful.

  6. Hmm says:

    Thomas Jane is kinda…hot.

  7. adastraperaspera says:

    Pretty rich to see Anne Heche taking credit for “a revolution that created social change.” She was a soap opera actress who glommed on to Ellen in ’97 to boost her career and then left when she had a foothold in the industry. In my opinion, her notoriety just helped diminish growing lesbian feminist political power by reducing it to a fashion statement on the red carpet.

    • ChloeCat says:

      I was just going to say the same thing about why she hooked up with Ellen. Anne Heche gets on my last nerve.

    • Brenda says:

      Lol barely any of that is true. She never identified as a lesbian, even then, she said that she was in love with Ellen and pursued that relationship. Today she identifies as sexually fluid, but that wasn’t widely recognised as a thing back then (hell, Ellen had to explain what lesbianism was on national TV back then — look at her Oprah episode from 1997). Heche also destroyed what was a genuinely ascendant career by being with Ellen, and weathered a ton of backlash as a result. She was a leading lady in major studio movies (including Volcano, Donnie Brasco, Return to Paradise etc) prior to Ellen, her soap opera days were long behind her. She lost roles, nearly got fired from Six Days Seven Nights and had to claw back her career once she and Ellen split.

      She also had an incredibly traumatic childhood where she was molested by her father for years, and had a very public mental breakdown shortly after being with Ellen when memories of her abuse resurfaced. No one took it seriously and she was lampooned all across the tabloids. I think it’s really sad how she was made fun of and talked about like a wacky, opportunist cartoon when she was clearly going through s*** back then. I’m glad she seems stable and healthy today, even if her sentences are admittedly hard to parse.

      • Juliette says:

        I agree and I remember that time when she had her breakdown. They were really hard on her in all the reporting (People magazine comes to mind as one of those) and it didn’t seem to be that Ellen was particularly publicly supportive of her. She could have been supportive behind the scenes but it didn’t seem that way when Anne spoke out later.

        Love her or hate her, she’s been through it. I’m glad she made it to the other side and seems happy and still has a somewhat successful career. Mental health issues are very hard to deal with and often hard to talk about.

      • H says:

        @Juliette, Ellen was NOT supportive of Anne during that breakdown. I read her autobiography. I also read Porscha’s. Ellen wasn’t there for either of them during tough times. That’s why I can’t stand her.

    • shab says:

      so you’re gonna diminish her experience and sexuality because it wasn’t portrayed in the media in a way that helped the lesbian feminist movement? That’s not her fault. That’s a product of the times, and anyway as Brenda has said it’s not true at all that she benefited from her relationship with Ellen.

    • Meg says:

      Good points

    • Janey says:

      I may be mistaken about this comment in particular but I’m always suspicious of people talking about how bisexual women harm lesbian political movements. There’s a lot of biphobia in the lesbian community. A lot of lesbians think bisexuality turns wlw into a fashion statement and that we don’t deal with the same stigmas/discrimination which obviously isn’t true.

  8. Case says:

    Her whole Ellen comment is terribly worded, but I don’t think she’s trying to victim blame. I think what she was getting at was that Ellen is standing in this situation and has the power to change it whenever she wants. I don’t think she was indicating that Ellen’s underlings can leave anytime.

  9. Faithmobile says:

    I get what she is saying. Ellen has power and there is no need to pretend otherwise or compare her to a domestic violence victim who is powerless to change the situation. Ellen made the mess and now she needs to clean it up.

  10. bluemoonhorse says:

    Hm that wasn’t the rumors I heard about what Harrison Ford said about her coming out during his movie. But I guess revisionist history works for some.

  11. anon says:

    Anne Heche wins the Garth Brooks Lifetime Achievement Award for best shadowing and photoshopping.

    Seriously, every single “portrait” of GB is half lit and super shadowed, always with a hat to further obfuscate what *he really looks like.*

    Listen Anne, we know how old you are. No need to hide in the bushes and cover your face with your hair. Own that shit and be an example of graceful aging.

  12. Shab says:

    I feel like the ‘if I’m standing somewhere’ comment was in reference to Ellen? As in, she had the power to change it? I’m not sure. I would hope she’s not referring to everyone because that completely ignores the power aspect.

  13. elle says:

    That cover photo looks half Laura Dern/half animatronic.

  14. Zut alors says:

    I’ll always have a soft spot for her from her Vicki / Marlie days on Another World.

    • Ladiabla says:

      Me too! I loved her on Another World, and the whole Ryan and Vicky romance. She was great in that role as Vicky/Marley. Ah, the 90s!

    • JanetDR says:

      OMG! I didn’t realize that was her! I quit watching it when I was pregnant as it stressed me out so much. She had a good story arc in Chicago PD too.

  15. Meg says:

    Lol as soon as i read
    ‘She and Tom Jane are together now, Anne basically left her husband as soon as she and Jane connected.’
    Rinse and repeat, do i have deja vu or has anne done this before ?

    Lol and the pic of then together they both look high as hell

    • Ellyn says:

      Still messy after all these years!

    • meghan says:

      She left someone to be with Ellen. She left ellen to be with the first ex husband. She left him for james tupper Now tupper for jane. Wonder who she’ll leave jane for?

  16. STRIPE says:

    Very word salad-y but I read this as her saying “Ellen can and should take inventory of the situation and change it if she wants to” – she opens with, essentially, “listen to people who are there now” so for me they colors the rest of this – she’s saying believe the people who are there now because I haven’t been there in years.

  17. shab says:


  18. Ada says:

    “If I’m standing someplace and I don’t like what’s going on there and I stay there, it’s my fault.” Anne Heche has NO idea what it’s like to be in the real world. Especially people working behind the scenes in media such as staff on Ellen’s show cannot often just change jobs as they please. Choice is limited and people need also the salary desperately. Think of e.g. all those junior staffers who need a job such as with Ellen to get a foot in the door, to gain experience, to get a good performance evaluation, to pay off student loans. Dear Anne, easy for you to say, easy for you. You have probably never worked in the real world…

  19. Lola says:

    Basically what I got from her interview was, Ellen had it rough, people forget that she had a lot of backlash when she came out and she paved the way for others. Being a hard boss (because of what she has gone through) vs being toxic are things that only people that are currently working with her can know. If you don’t like your work environment you can change it. Determination is key.

  20. Ames says:

    Pretty gross, pulling that tapdancing-on-coattails routine at this point in her “career,” but I guess that’s always kinda been her thing. Whatever works, I guess. But if what you have to say is already barely relevant, it might be a good idea to at least try to make sense.

  21. Lisa says:

    Very word salady.

  22. Johnny says:

    Anne Heche is a hack!!

  23. Intheknow says:

    I’ve loved Ann from her soap opera days. I am still a huge fan. Love Thomas Jane also.

  24. Cathi says:

    I thought the magazine cover was a picture of that person who wrote all of the Harry Potter books; I can’t think of their name.

  25. FancyHat says:

    I will always have a soft spot for Anne due to her portrayal of Vicki/Marley on Another World. That show got me through middle school. It was the highlight of my day