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Actors’ union launches initiative to support LGBT actors coming out

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  1. Patricia Durr 6 Apr 2012, 10:26pm

    I wish that like sexuality it didn’t matter, but Max Beckmann is a ‘she’.

  2. Hollywood has been good about taking care of it’s people. paying them good and awarding them when they do good and when they retire so it is only fitting they help and support LGBT people. Good for Hollywood on setting the example on how to treat all people. Now if only the rest of the world treated people that good the world would be a better place. God Bless them.

  3. KatieMUrphy 7 Apr 2012, 1:22am

    I think more and more people understand that ‘coming out’ is hte key to full equality..

    its hard to hate people you know and respect.

    And so easy to hate and demonize people you dont know or interact with on a regular basis.

    the closet is nothing but a different form of segregation, also enforced by terror.

  4. Dionysian 7 Apr 2012, 2:59am

    I work in television (nothing glam – I’m a Tecchie) and have talked with some of the actors who don’t like to play non- straight roles on screen, not because they are hetero and don’t want to appear gay, but because they don’t want to incur the wrath of the non- straight community for playing it too camp / too straight / unconvincingly / stereotyped.

    It cuts both ways. But same as ANY job, what someone gets up to in the bedroom has no place in the boardroom.

  5. Another Hannah 7 Apr 2012, 10:38am

    Hmm, nice for Gay actors I suppose, though I think it’s a bit much to expect somebody to put their entire career and livlihood on the line in the hope that others came out, as is suggested here. Of course no thought for TSs like me as usual. I see cardinal Keith O’Brien is on the BBC have your say board – I tried to give the story of visiting my terminally ill gran and experienceing harassment, but the post had to go t the moderator, despite not one lewd word!!!!! BBC is quite important to actors surely?

  6. When did we become so sheepish – Mr Everett is absolutely right – If audiences – supportive or hostile – know you are gay they simply cannot divorce that knowledge from the role they witness you playing – there have been lots of leading man roles Mr Everett could have knocked out of the park – but it will no longer happen for him –

    Frankly I don’t want to know my favourite actors, sexual identity, their faith, or how obnoxious they are, anything that inhibits my ability ‘to suspend my disbelief’, during their various performances.

    This is another excellent example of how far we have to go before we truly have Equality.

    1. @JohnD

      By that logic we wouldn’t be able to believe an actor playing the role of a doctor, for example, because we know they’re not one in real life. In fact, we wouldn’t be able to watch any films, plays or tv shows at all!

      1. I don’t understand the logic either. I know that actors are people and they are playing a role. If not, Anthony Hopkins would have to be a very very scary man!

      2. Nor do I understand it, but finding it hard to imagine a gay actor being convincing in a non-gay role is depressingly common, even among otherwise well-meaning people.

        Fortunately it does seem to be changing slowly, thanks in part to actors like Russell Tovey and Michael French. It’s going to be a long time before it happens in Hollywood though.

        1. There are lots of gay actors who play characters who aren’t gay and are believable. You’ve already mentioned Russell Tovey and Michael French. How about Ben Daniels, Jeremy Sheffield, Pam St. Clement, Miriam Margolyes, Fiona Shaw, Saffron Burrows, Sir Ian McKellen and the late Sir Nigel Hawthorne.

          1. I didn’t mention the women because the same rule (oddly) doesn’t seem to apply. Ben Daniels and Jeremy Sheffield, yes definitely (though the latter seems to get very few roles on TV now). The older ones less so simply because it’d appear to be a problem that people have when contemplating a non-gay role where the character is sexually active or desirable. (I’m going on opinions canvassed among colleagues here.)

          2. @Rehan

            Yes, I see what you mean about the women actors and the older male actors. The point I was trying to make is that there are plenty of actors who have played non-gay roles convincingly, in my opinion. I mentioned those specific actors off the top of my head. But you’re right about Jeremy Sheffield, maybe he can’t get roles these days because he’s openly gay or is he doing theatre perhaps and not televison work – it’d be interesting to find out.

  7. Unfortunately, It will never work really. An actor who comes out just doesn’t appeal to the majority of hetero women. Not because of homophobia, but because most women do watch tom cruise etc. thinking one day they may meet him and get married to him, or at least dream about the possibility. So an actor who comes out cuts down the amount of parts he can play. And men just don’t believe gay men are alpha males. And the majority of parts are for alpha males in cinema. Actresses are completely different. Men love to think of women getting off with one another. Which is why there are a few actresses who are ‘bi’ and still get big parts. I wish it weren’t this way. But after many years in the industry, I know it is. I know this won’t be popular, but my advice to any actor is, if you want to get big roles, don’t come out. If you don’t mind spending your life on corrie playing the token gay, then cool, come out. It’s horrible advice, but that’s the way it is. And it will never change.

    1. Staircase2 7 Apr 2012, 10:10pm

      This is actually not true at all (AT ALL)

      Can’t remember if you’re American or not but) this may seem true in a largely unreconstructed country like America but in my experience most women actually often feel more comfortable in the company of gay men than they do straight men. Perhaps this is also true because they are then at liberty to indulge their fantasies for someone from a safer distance than they might with an unreconstructed straight man…

      Your argument was the same tired old one used by impresarios in the Music Biz back in the dark ages. This is rarely understood to be a completely water-tight truth any more as many pop stars have come out with less of an impact on their careers than might have been imagined by the PR doom-mongers…

      Might I remind everyone that the key word here is ‘ACTOR’ – whether someone can ‘believe’ in a gay man being an ‘alpha male’ (which is bollocks by the way) depends on proper casting and how good the actor is – not on their own personality…

      1. You obviously don’t work in and have no experience of dealing with people at a high level in the industry. If a gay actor comes out of the closet. He will cut down the parts he plays. That’s the way it is, that’s reality, you may not like it, I don’t like it, but that’s the world we live in. My advice is for actors careers, not gay rights. And if a young gay actor cares more about his career than gay rights – and that’s his choice, not yours – then he shouldn’t be open about his sexuality. There are many actors who are open about their sexuality. They usually play wizards or cabaret stars or the gay man in a TV series. Nothing wrong with any of those parts, and they’re lucky to get that far, but they will get no further than that.

    2. That’s true to a point but, contrary to all expectations, that’s not how it ended up working out with Stephen Gately and Will Young – they continued to have their screaming young female fans. So maybe there’s just a glimmer of hope after all?

  8. Staircase2 7 Apr 2012, 10:02pm

    …the greater part of oppression is collusion…

  9. Staircase2 7 Apr 2012, 10:20pm

    @ James E:
    You know I hadn’t read that last homophobic bit re corrie until just now…

    HORRIBLE HORRIBLE HORRIBLE….

    The greatest part of oppression is collusion….(welcome to the unreconstructed homophobic homosexuals collusion club…)

    “It was 20 (or so) years ago today
    That Mrs Thatcher taught the band to play
    They’ve been going in and out (of the closet) and style
    And they’re always quick to kill with a smile
    So may I introduce to you – the closets you’ve feared for all these years…
    The unreconstructed homophobic homosexuals collusion club band…”

  10. Scott of Sydney 8 Apr 2012, 4:15am

    Being a gay actor is mattering less and less to mainstream society. We see the truth of this with shows like Glee, Modern Familiy etc. The best example is Neil Patrick Harris. The whole world knows he is gan and married. He still plays the single straight guy on top rating How I Met Your Mother though. No problem there. The problem is a figment of paranoid agents minds.

    1. No, I think that’s always been true about a lot of theatre and, much more recently, television, but it’s going to be a long, long time before audiences for mainstream Hollywood can cope with a gay man in a central, non-gay role.

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