Star of Russian sitcom comes out as gay
One of the stars of one of Russia’s biggest sitcoms has come out as gay.
Odin Biron, who stars in the Russian version of Scrubs, titled Interny (Interns), in which he plays an American exchange student at a Russian hospital.
The actor, who is originally from Minnesota, has become a big name in Russia as a result of the show – which is watched by around 3.7 million viewers.
However, Biron has taken one of the biggest risks of his career – by coming out as gay in an interview.
He told Vulture: “I’ve never lied. Journalists ask, ‘What do you think of Russian women?’ Well, Russian women are beautiful.’ ‘Do you have a girlfriend right now?’ No, I don’t.”
The actor – who is dating a Kazakhstani director – said he wanted to do his best “to make this count” by coming out.
One of his co-stars, Ivan Okhlobystin, is a notorious homophobe who claimed in 2013 that all gay people should be put into an oven and burned alive.
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Biron said: “When he’s not saying outrageously offensive stuff, I really like that man, and he’s been sweet with me.
“He’ll say, ‘Odin, I’m gonna bomb the crap out of America, but I’m gonna save Minnesota because of you.’
“[After his comments] I wanted to go to the station and make a statement that I would no longer work there if Ivan Okhlobystin’s going to be working at this station.”
However, Borin decided against his ultimatum, adding: “It’s just not the way I want to operate.
“That’s the way things operate in the States. That’s not what this country needs. This country needs dialogue.”
Despite his homophobic co-star, Interny is one of the only shows to have portrayed homosexuality on Russian television, when Biron’s character was revealed to have two gay dads.