Hollywood studios branded Rupert Everett a pervert when he came out, the gay actor has revealed.

The British star came out in 1992, making him one of the first openly gay Hollywood actors, but he says his sexuality held him back from getting big parts.

He told The Times Cheltenham Festival of Literature that when he first admitted he is gay producers would overlook him for major roles.

One early example he described to the audience was when actress Sharon Stone recommended him for a role which was then vetoed by the head of the studio who allegedly said, “Oh no, he’s not playing that role – he’s a pervert.”

Everett blamed it on the fact that a lot of studios are owned by right-wing Christians, he told the audience, “Half the film theatre owners in America are right-wing Christians.”

He said an American audience would never accept him in an action role.

The actor is currently promoting his autobiography Red Carpets and Other Banana Skins.

The Times Cheltenham Festival of Literature is on until this Sunday.