Megan Mullally says Ellen DeGeneres paved the way for Will & Grace
Megan Mullally—who plays Karen Walker in Will & Grace—has said that Ellen DeGeneres coming out in her 1990s sitcom helped their show get made.
Mullally made the comments during an interview on The Ellen DeGeneres Show last week where she praised the comedian and talk-show host for her groundbreaking coming out scene.
Speaking to DeGeneres, Mullally said: “Your show really laid the groundwork for Will & Grace. I don’t know if there would have been a Will & Grace had you not done that show and come out, so thank you for that.”
She continued: “Thank you for my career.”
Karen had her first lesbian kiss on Will & Grace recently
The actress made the comments after her character Karen Walker had her first same-sex kiss on Will and Grace on March 21.
Karen had her first kiss with lesbian character Nikki, who is played by Samira Wiley of Orange Is The New Black.
The kiss sent Will & Grace fans wild. One fan tweeted: “Will and Grace made Megan Mullally and Samira Wiley kiss and this is why we have to protect basic cable.”
“I don’t know if there would have been a Will & Grace had you not done that show and come out, so thank you for that.”
– Megan Mullally
Another said: “did… did anyone else notice that last night’s will & grace had samira wiley and megan mullally’s characters… kissing… earnestly?”
Earlier this year, Mullally opened up about her 30 year long friendship with Ellen DeGeneres, and said it had taken her years to realise that she was a lesbian.
In another interview with Ellen that aired in January, Mullally said she used to think the talk show host just had “lots of lovely roommates” and said she often visited her house in Los Angeles.
Mullally took years to figure out that Ellen DeGeneres was gay
“I remember thinking, ‘Oh, that’s nice, Ellen has this lovely roommate … they really seem like they get along great,’” the actress said on the show.
“And then, as the years went on, [she] had a lot of really lovely roommates, and I thought, ‘Ellen just gets along so well with people. People are just drawn to her like a magnet.’”
It appears that Ellen and her girlfriends would have a lot of laughs at the actor’s expense, who eventually cottoned on.
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“I remember you’d be, like, cracking up,” she told DeGeneres, “and I’d be like, ‘Why are they laughing at me?’”
“Really, you didn’t realize I was gay?” Ellen asked Mullally.
“I did not, no,” the actress replied.
46 million people tuned in to see Ellen come out on her self-titled sitcom in 1997, making it one of the most watched episodes of the year.
However, bosses at ABC were reportedly unhappy with the subject matter, which led to the show being axed.