Lily Tomlin on the 1975 Time Cover That Never Was

ShutterstockLilyTomlin2014Ahead of this Sunday’s Kennedy Center Honors broadcast, Washington Post film critic Ann Hornaday has shared a wonderful celebration of 2014 honoree Lily Tomlin‘s many talents.

Tomlin explains to Hornaday that she “remembers life in anecdotes.” And so, there are several memorable ones here about the performer’s early days in New York City, shared in full or in snippets. There is also, at one point, a reminder of what would have been an earth-shaking media moment:

Although Tomlin had been pressured over the years to publicly acknowledge her sexual orientation — in 1975 Time magazine offered her the cover if she’d come out — Tomlin always demurred. “I never did not come out,” she explains now.

“I wanted to be acknowledged for my work. I didn’t want to be that gay person who does comedy.”

Tomlin married her longtime partner Jane Wagner last New Year’s Eve. She also hints that if she and Jane Fonda get a second season order for their upcoming Netflix series Grace and Frankie, that there will almost certainly be an on-screen reunion with 9 to 5 cohort Dolly Parton.

P.S. Two years after passing on the 1975 Time offer, Tomlin adorned the cover of the magazine next to the headline “New Queen of Comedy.”

[Photo: Helga Esteb/]