Last updated

A gigolo ( /ˈɪɡəˌl,ˈʒɪɡ-/ ) is a male escort or social companion who is supported by a person in a continuing relationship, [1] often living in her residence or having to be present at her beck and call.


The term gigolo usually implies a man who adopts a lifestyle consisting of a number of such relationships serially rather than having other means of support. [2] [3]

The gigolo is expected to provide companionship, to serve as a consistent escort with good manners and social skills, and often to serve as a dancing partner as required by the woman in exchange for the support. Many gifts, such as expensive clothing and an automobile to drive, may be lavished upon him. The relationship may include sexual services as well, and he also can be referred to as a "kept man." [4]

The word gigolo may be traced to a first usage in English as a neologism during the 1920s as a back-formation from gigolette, a French word for a woman hired as a dancing partner. Both gigolo and gigolette were first recorded in French in the middle part of the 19th century, referring to dance club denizens in Montmartre paid to dance with, and sometimes have sex with, unaccompanied male visitors. In the latter part of the 19th century, particularly after the scandalous murder case known in Paris as the Pranzini Affair, the term gigolo took on connotations of the exotic, foreign male whose company and affections could be purchased by well-to-do French women. [5]



TV series


See also

Related Research Articles

<i>American Gigolo</i> 1980 crime drama film by Paul Schrader

American Gigolo is a 1980 American neo-noir crime drama film written and directed by Paul Schrader and starring Richard Gere and Lauren Hutton. It tells the story about a high-priced escort in Los Angeles (Gere) who becomes romantically involved with a prominent politician's wife (Hutton), while simultaneously becoming the prime suspect in a murder case.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Josiane Balasko</span> French actress, writer, and director

Josiane Balasko is a French actress, writer, and director. She has been nominated seven times for César Awards, and won twice.

<i>The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone</i> 1961 film by José Quintero

The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone is a 1961 British romantic drama film made by Warner Bros. It was directed by José Quintero and produced by Louis de Rochemont with Lothar Wolff as associate producer. The screenplay was written by Gavin Lambert and Jan Read and based on the novel by Tennessee Williams. The music score was by Richard Addinsell and the cinematography by Harry Waxman.

<i>Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo</i> 1999 film by Mike Mitchell

Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo is a 1999 American sex comedy film directed by Mike Mitchell in his feature-length directorial debut, written by Harris Goldberg and Rob Schneider, and starring Schneider, William Forsythe, Eddie Griffin, and Arija Bareikis. The film tells the story of a hapless fishtank cleaner who goes into business as a male sex worker in an attempt to earn enough money to repair damage he caused while house-sitting. The film is notable for being the first film produced by Happy Madison Productions.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Gail O'Grady</span> American actress

Gail Ann O'Grady, an American actress and producer, is best known for her roles on television. Her roles include Donna Abandando in the ABC police drama NYPD Blue, and Helen Pryor in the NBC drama series American Dreams. O'Grady is also well known for her lead roles in a number of television movies. She has been nominated for a Primetime Emmy Awards three times.

<i>Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo</i> 2005 film by Mike Bigelow

Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo is a 2005 American sex comedy film and a sequel to the 1999 film Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, from Happy Madison Productions. The film is written by Rob Schneider, David Garrett, and Jason Ward, and starring Schneider, Eddie Griffin, and Jeroen Krabbé. The plot involves male prostitute Deuce Bigalow visiting his former pimp T.J. in Amsterdam, and then finds himself looking for a murderer who is killing the greatest "man-whores" of Europe. Unlike Male Gigolo, distributed by Disney's Touchstone Pictures brand, European Gigolo was released by Sony Pictures Releasing through Columbia Pictures.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Male prostitution</span> Act or practice of men providing sexual services in return for payment

Male prostitution is the act or practice of men providing sexual services in return for payment. It is a form of sex work. Although clients can be of any gender, the vast majority are older males looking to fulfill their sexual needs. Male prostitutes have been far less studied than female prostitutes by researchers. Even so, male prostitution has an extensive history including regulation through homosexuality, conceptual developments on sexuality, and the HIV/AIDS, monkeypox, and COVID-19 epidemic impact. In the last century, male sex work has seen various advancements. Popularizing new sexual acts, methods of exchange, and carving out a spot in cinema. Today, there is a focus on improving the work conditions, treatment, and mental health of male sex workers.

Arija Allison Bareikis is an American actress. She is best known for her role as Officer Chickie Brown in the TV crime drama Southland. She is also known for the films Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo and The Purge.

<i>Too Beautiful for You</i> 1989 French film

Too Beautiful for You is a 1989 French romantic comedy-drama film written and directed by Bertrand Blier. It tells the story of Bernard, a well-established BMW car dealer in the South of France, who is cheating on his beautiful wife with his ordinary-looking secretary.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Mathieu Demy</span> French actor, film director and producer

Mathieu Demy is a French actor, film director and producer.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Bree Turner</span> American actress and dancer

Bree Nicole Turner is an American actress and dancer; she is best known for her role as Rosalee Calvert on Grimm.

The male prostitute or hustler is a frequent stereotype in literature and movies in the West from the 1960s on, and especially in movies and books with a gay perspective in which he may be considered a stock character. He also appears occasionally in popular music, some contemporary fashion advertising, and the visual arts.

<i>French Twist</i> (film) 1995 French film

French Twist is a cult 1995 French comedy film. It was written and directed by Josiane Balasko. The film was one of very few French films to have a dubbed version for English audiences. Its title in French is untranslatable but 'Cursed Lawn' is a close approximation. It also refers to the shaving of pubic hair, a subtle joke in French alluding to the subject matter of the film. The film was selected as the French entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 68th Academy Awards, but was not accepted as a nominee.

<i>The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone</i> (2003 film) 2003 romantic drama

The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone is a 2003 made-for-television romantic drama film and a remake of the 1961 film of the same name based on the 1950 novel of the same title by Tennessee Williams.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Marilou Berry</span> French actress, film director and screenwriter

Marilou Berry is a French actress, film director and screenwriter.

<i>A French Gigolo</i> 2008 film directed by Josiane Balasko

A French Gigolo is a 2008 French comedy-drama film directed by Josiane Balasko and starring Nathalie Baye, Éric Caravaca, Isabelle Carré and Balasko.

<i>The Ex-Wife of My Life</i> 2005 French film

The Ex-Wife of My Life or L'Ex-femme de ma vie is a 2005 French comedy-drama film directed by Josiane Balasko and starring Balasko, Karin Viard and Thierry Lhermitte. It is the sixth film directed by Balasko.

<i>The Gigolo</i> (2015 film) 2015 Hong Kong film

The Gigolo is a 2015 Hong Kong erotic drama film directed and written by Au Cheuk-man and starring Dominic Ho, Candy Yuen, Jeana Ho, Hazel Tong and Winnie Leung. A sequel titled The Gigolo 2 was released on January 14, 2016 with Dominic Ho reprising his role as Fung.

<i>The Gigolo 2</i> 2016 Hong Kong film

The Gigolo 2 is a 2016 Hong Kong erotic comedy film directed by Venus Keung and starring Dominic Ho, Connie Man, Jazz Lam and Iris Chung. It is the sequel to The Gigolo (2015). The film was released on January 14, 2016 in Hong Kong.

Romantic Noy is a Bengali drama film based on male prostitution, Saheb Bhattacharya plays the role of a prostitute who sells his body to women. The film was directed by Rajib Chowdhury and produced by Omprakash Saraogi. It was released on 18 November 2016 in the banner of Om Cine Movies. This is Chowdhury's directorial debut in Tollywood Film Industry. The music is released by Amara Muzik.


  1. "Definition of gigolo". Merriam-Webster Dictionary
  2. Otterman, Sharon, "'Swiss Gigolo' Sentenced to Six Years". 2009-03-09., The Lede, March 9, 2009, News, The New York Times, February 14, 2013.
  3. Dahlkamp, Jürgen, Röbel, Sven, and Smoltczyk, Alexander, Dahlkamp, Jürgen; Röbel, Sven; Smoltczyk, Alexander (2009-03-06). "Gigolo Trial: Trial to Begin for Man Who Duped Germany's Richest Woman". Spiegel Online., Spiegel Online International, accessed February 14, 2013.
  4. "A man who is kept by a woman"., Word Reference, accessed February 14, 2013.
  5. Freundschuh, Aaron. The Courtesan and the Gigolo: The Murders in the Rue Montaigne and the Dark Side of Empire in Nineteenth-Century Paris (2017, Stanford University Press)

Further reading