Grey’s Anatomy: Jake Borelli ‘assumed’ his character was straight
Grey’s Anatomy actor Jake Borelli has said he “assumed” his character Levi Schmitt was straight.
Speaking to Gay Times, Borelli said he had played his character as if he were straight—before finding out that Schmitt was set to share a kiss with Dr. Nico Kim.
Borelli, who came out as gay following his character’s on-screen romance, told the publication: “I think I, along with the rest of the audience, assumed Levi was straight.
“That was all the information we had, and that’s how I played him for the whole first year, just because I wasn’t given any contradictory information.”
Grey’s Anatomy‘s Jake Borelli: My character’s story fits into my own history
Borrelli added that he believed his character is “still learning” about his sexuality.
He continued: “I took a step back and I was like, ‘Okay, how do we shift the backstory that I’ve created for Levi, and make this make sense?’
“And I think we came up with something really beautiful and really exciting…It’s a story that fits right into my own history, and it’s very close to me in some ways.
“I realised that this was going to be way bigger than me and my own coming out.”
Jake Borelli says he read messages for “four hours” when he came out after Grey’s Anatomy episode
Borelli also discussed the overwhelming response he received from his fans when he came out.
“I’ve received so many messages, I can hardly read them all,” he told the magazine.
“I sat there for like four hours and some of them were heartbreaking, and some of them were filled with joy and excitement.
“It was beautiful to see how brave all of the fans were being with sharing their story. It truly felt like we were doing this together.”
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Borelli publicly came out as gay to his fans on Instagram in response to Schmitt’s same-sex romance.
“As a gay guy myself, tonight’s episode was so special to me,” he posted.
“This is exactly the kind of story I craved as a young gay kid growing up in Ohio, and it blows my mind that I’m able to bring life to Dr. Levi Schmitt as he begins to grapple with his own sexuality this season on Grey’s Anatomy.
“His vulnerability and courage inspire me every day, and I hope he can do the same for you.”