Morning Man Classic: Christopher Atkins!
Christopher Atkins celebrated his 60th birthday last on Sunday.
As you can see, during the early days of his career when he co-starred opposite Brooke Shields in The Blue Lagoon, was Linda Gray’s young lover on Dallas and played a male stripper in the TV movie A Night of Heaven, Chris wore very little clothes!
He famously went full-frontal in The Blue Lagoon when he wasn’t wearing the famous loincloth that was pretty much his entire wardrobe in that classic film. When I interviewed Chris over morning coffee a decade ago, he told me that countless times over the years, he has been told by gay men – who were teens at the time of the film’s release – that the movie and his nudity helped them realize they were gay!
The actor, who by the way is still real cute, estimates that “90 percent of my fan base is a gay fan base” which is fine with him.
“I’m actually very lucky in that respect because I am able to have that crossover so I have both straight and gay fans,” he said. “The 80s was a big time for the gay movement and here came a movie where it was male nudity being prominant rather than female nudity and so [I] became sort of an iconic poster child at that time. To me, it was kind of flattering. America is the most prudish country on the face of the Earth. If that movie was made in France, it would be a G-rated movie.”
So, was it hard for Chris to shake off the pin-up image post-”Lagoon”?
“I had to show my ass in more movies than you can imagine,” he said. “I kept saying there has to be a time when they say, ‘Please keep your clothes on!’ And I think I’m there (laughs).
In the 1990s and 2000s, he appeared in the movies Fatal Charms, Project Shadowchaser III and Angel Flight Dawn. Other projects included Caved In, Spiritual Warriors, 13th Child, The Employee of the Month, Tequila Express, Quigley and True Legends of the West. Comic roles include Mortuary Academy (1988) and Shoot (1992), and he reunited with Brooke Shields on her series Suddenly Susan as a fellow journalist who is uninterested in her.
More recently, Atkins had a role in the 2012 TV movie Blue Lagoon: The Awakening and in 2015 had roles in the films
A Horse for Summer, Kids vs. Monsters, and The Sparrows.