NEW YORK (April 23, 2007) — Ten years after they kissed on the “Ellen” show, Ellen DeGeneres and Laura Dern reunited Monday on DeGeneres’ syndicated talk show to reflect back on the smooch and its aftermath.
DeGeneres, 49, made pop-culture history in 1997 by coming out of the closet in real life while her sitcom character did likewise. In her character’s coming-out episode, Dern shared a smooch with the comedian during a guest stint on the ABC series as a lesbian love interest.
Dern, 40, recounted Monday how she couldn’t get an acting job for more than a year afterward. “There was certainly backlash, I guess, (that) we all felt from it,” she told DeGeneres, who said she was sorry and “had no idea” that Dern was snubbed in Hollywood.
Not getting work felt “awfully terrifying,” recalled Dern, who said she’s grateful for the “extraordinary experience and opportunity” to be a part of the groundbreaking episode, which also guest starred Oprah Winfrey, Demi Moore and Melissa Etheridge.