Saltburn is out, and whether you're completely hooked or numb to the set pieces in Emerald Fennell's sophomore film, we can all agree on the palpable chemistry between its leads. Barry Keoghan plays Oliver Quick, an apparently working class student who is fixated on his handsome, charismatic, and impossibly wealthy classmate Felix Catton, executed by Jacob Elordi.
With the SAG strike over, Keoghan and Elordi are completing a press tour to promote the film, during which they've decided to put on a giddy show of male friendship. During a panel following the film's LA premiere on November 17, Elordi and Keoghan were snapped poking each other, and, in one moment, Elordi reaches down for Keoghan's drink and taps him on the leg as if to say "you're welcome, short king".
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This delightful back-and-forth is perfectly summed up in a Variety interview between Elordi and Keoghan (and if you look closer, the rest of their joint interviews). Speaking to a notorious bathroom scene in Saltburn, in which Oliver rims a bath drain after Felix has just masturbated in it, Elordi joked, “I was like, ‘Thank God, it’s mine. I was very proud. I was very proud to have Barry Keoghan guzzling it like that.”
To which Keoghan responded, “He doesn’t text me back or ring me back. It’s so weird. He’s pretending to like me. It’s weird, man".
On the red carpet that same night, press captured Keoghan vying for a kiss from Elordi. Some have been quick to call out the behaviour for 'queer-baiting' and there's undoubtedly some careful marketing going on. But also... maybe they're just obsessed with each other? Not the lethal kind of obsession between Felix and Oliver, more like two drunk girls in the club bathrooms. If we've learned anything from Saltburn it's that male friendship can contain multitudes, too. Just ask Paul Mescal and Andrew Scott.
— Marc Malkin (@marcmalkin) November 15, 2023
Anyway, it's not as if it's the first time two leading co-stars have played up their connection to the press. Many will remember Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper doubling-down on their romance for A Star is Born or Oscar Isaac and Jessica Chastain while promoting Scenes From A Marriage. Here's what the internet had to say about Elordi and Keoghan's dynamic.
jacob elordi and barry keoghan pic.twitter.com/8unU1j9SI9
— lou (@christiansbale) November 19, 2023
— Siân 🦩♎️ (@Sian__McG) November 17, 2023
jacob elordi and barry keoghan pic.twitter.com/HvNX2uK8k2
— liz (@wlscarah) November 17, 2023
obsessed with the way barry keoghan talk about jacob elordi pic.twitter.com/nMkhwjFbfZ
— uly (@sairated) November 17, 2023
Fighting the urge to tweet some absolutely vile things about Barry Keoghan and Jacob Elordi
— Tuwa (@twwlnh) November 20, 2023