There's are very few places in this fine country where you can make a career out of getting people into a club. Well, one person that knows all about taking the nightlife track is Miss Elaine Lancaster (real name James Davis). Even if you've never heard of her, there's a good chance you've seen her around town. She rolls with the richest and most A-List crowds in Miami. She even calls Pamela Anderson her BFF.
This fall, she'll appear on the new season of Bravo's Real Housewives of Miami. So before she starts on her new path of reality stardom, we sat down with the world famous drag queen to ask her about the super secret show and her rumored affair with hottie Colin Farrell. She also revealed that she watches a lot of Fox News and wants to live her own Brokeback Mountain.
New Times: We're excited to hear you will be on the upcoming season of Real Housewives of Miami. It's so epic in so many ways.
Elaine Lancaster: I think it is too. My whole goal in life is to educate through humor. I want to be an educational bridge builder, because I know that you can stand on a soapbox and preach, "I'm worthy of equality!" But an everyday interaction will give a more positive feeling then having someone trying to tell people how they should feel. A first-hand encounter is so much more effective than imposing one's position.
Are you excited to be a part of the show?
I'm excited to be a part of it. I'm not an official housewife, I'm a best friend of a housewife. You are going to see me as a man and as a woman, but I'm not by definition a housewife.
How has the gay community responded to news of the show?
Mixed reviews. It's hard. Sometimes I feel more accepted by the straight community than the gay community. I'm not going to dress in a suit and tie to be accepted. We can coexist. I'm not a woman, I don't want to be one. But I do play one on TV, and I thoroughly enjoy it. But I have had a lot of support. It's been great.
Do you watch any of the Housewives franchises?
I've never seen any of them. I have seen clips on shows like, The Soup, but I rarely watch entertainment shows. I watch a lot of Fox News, CNN, MSNBC.
What was the decision process like to do this show?
I wouldn't be doing this if it wasn't for Leah Black. Leah wasn't going to do it if I wouldn't have done it, so I decided we should go for it. I have been invited by multiple reality shows in and out of town. I have been reluctant to do it, but it just felt right. Leah Black is a woman of great integrity, and her husband is one of the best attorneys in the nation. It's going to be great.
What do your fans think of you doing the show?
They are so into these damn housewife franchises -- it's kind of a cult following. I think it's because our world is in a sad place and watching shows like these is a kind of escapism. Much like when cinema was at its peak during World War II, people need something to distract them from the state of the world.
Did you always know you were going to be a drag queen?
I didn't know my vehicle was going to be drag, but I knew I was going to be in the entertainment business. It has created so many wonderful things in my life. At the same time, many people have judged as well. People see me as man dressed as a woman and think to themselves, "That man must want to be a woman." I'm an actor.
Speaking of men, do you have one in your life?
I say that I am a kept man, because this big blonde woman takes care of me. She pays all the bills; she bought the building I live in. Elaine has been very good to me. One day I will have to send Elaine off to some fabulous resort to live and never see her again. Ultimately, I would like to have a ranch in a western state and spend a lot of time there. Something very Brokeback Mountain.
What would you say you do for a career? We know you DJ, host parties, and do reality TV.
I am an actor. Kate Hudson's little boy asked her while we were doing an event together, "Is that a man or a woman?" and she told him, "You have to ask her." So I looked him in the face and said, "Like your mom plays rolls, so do I. I am a man who plays a woman."
I know you are DJing Cafeina's Big Halloween Bash on Saturday. When did you start DJing?
I have been DJing for years. I started with the Ritz Carlton South Beach on Friday and Saturday nights a few years back. I got into to because I hated all the music I was hearing all the places I would go. I think music can be a drug, much like drag, and I just wanted to start hearing great music again, so I decided to bring it back myself.
With all the LGBT support lately, would you say it does get better?
It does get better. Absolutely. I was bullied in school, but I was always a tough son of a bitch. Lucky for me, my brother was the best football player in high school, so I had a little bit of an advantage. I actually had a man in college that was extremely horrible to be me, and I could never understand it. But if one ever sees bullying, it has to be stopped. I think these life-altering events are showing the need to speak out against it. There has to be zero tolerance.
Is it true you had an affair with Colin Farrell? It was all over the gossip websites.
That I am saving for my book. But I will tell you, about eight months after the supposed "affair," his boy was named James -- the same name as me. Coincidence? You tell me.
What about Dennis Rodman?
Dennis and I are lover, not sexual lovers, but extremely emotionally connected. We have been friends for years. We actually lived together in California. I pay respect to so much of what I am to him. It was kinda like two clowns meeting in the night when we first met.
I know you have lived all over the world--why come back to Miami?
I have had so many offers to move to L.A. or New York City for this and that, but I love this town. I am invested emotionally here, and I have invested as a landowner. I have been flown all over the world for events, but I always come back here. I just love it. A "Madam of Miami" if you will.