Thursday, November 16, 2006

So yesterday afternoon I had a client come in who is gay (B+ - B- lister) and who I helped with a domestic partnership agreement for he and his partner. When I saw the appointment on my calendar, I assumed it had something to do with the agreement but I was wrong..

It had to do with a role he is most likely going to get and what effect it will have on his life and career. I do not represent him for anything but the above mentioned agreement. He came to me for advice as an attorney and also as a friend and I was touched..Agents, managers and publicists are trained to look at the dollar signs and how can I get my client those dollar signs and we tend to put blinders on to anything else but those dollars..I have those same blinders at times although I really do try to not do otherwise, but it does slip out and I do not think anyone is completely altruistic except for those who have taken a vow to do so and not always even them..

In the last few months there have been a few celebrities outed by bloggers and I do not really understand why because in at least one of the cases everyone already knew he was gay and so the only thing it seeks to do is to harm his career..

There are many more gay actors and actresses in Hollywood than the general public probably realizes..It runs the gamut from A listers to D listers and everywhere in between..For the most part, producers and casting agents and managers and those "inside" know who is gay and who is not..This has been especially true since California passed a domestic partnership law and so more and more couples are coming to my office and other offices to take advantage of the law and make sure each party is provided for..

Most people I know, knew that Neil Patrick Harris was gay and he never tried to hide it. I do not know NPH well, but we know each other enough to say hi and have a chat if we see each other..NPH did not need to be "outed" since he was already out..He wasn't trying to be anything other than what he is..

The problem is that a particular blogger decided that everyone needed to know NPH was gay and in my opinion was very malicious in the way he went about it and was seeking out people who had slept with NPH, etc..

NPH lets face it kind of disappeared after Doogie for the most part..He was making a living doing theatre and was doing very well for himself but not like he is now..So, then he gets a chance in Harold and Kumar and everyone sees him now as this crazy heterosexual party guy everyone wants to hang out with and this translates into "How I Met Your Mother" where he is basically the same character..It is just Harold and Kumar reinforced..People in Hollywood know he is gay, but the general public does not know and they are loving NPH..

What will happen now to NPH? He is an incredible actor, but will people want to believe what they saw in Harold & Kumar? Was Ellen ever a romantic lead after "Mr. Wrong?"

When I share secrets and confidences with the readers of this blog I do so in a format which makes sure that no one gets hurt or loses a job or forces someone to do something they did not want to do just to satisfy the egomanical lusting of a blogger looking for more readers..

Now..back to my office yesterday afternoon..we are discussing in much greater detail and more people we know who may be forced into this same type of situation..My client has a chance at a role that will make him an A lister in an instant..this will mean more money, opportunity, and fulfilling his dream..At the same time he does not want anything to happen that will jeopardize his 3 year relationship with his partner and their future together..He is afraid that he will be given this opportunity, take it and do well, and then have it taken away by someone who has nothing better to do than be cruel..Or he can walk away from the role, continue his career which is nice and steady and probably will not come on the radar of anyone trying to harm and everything will be fine...This is the dilemma he finds himself in now and it sucks that it has to be a dilemma..Hollywood is fantasy and dreams and that is what the whole industry is based on from cartoons to porn...everyone is willing to play along with the fantasy and dream as long as it does not hurt the bottom line and it sucks when you are not able to make the choice of whether or not to keep the dream going..

I am 99% sure of what his decision will be and I wish I could tell you, but that might be too many clues, and I am not going to take away anyone's dream...


Anonymous said...

i know who the blogger you're talking about is and i agree. i barely check his site anymore because most of it isn't even snarky or tongue-in-cheek, it's mean-spirited and all about the hits, media coverage, and attention.

i wish the best for your client!

jd said...

It's too bad he made the decision he did, even though I understand it. That role he backed out of could have done amazing things for his career. Instead he's now doing another movie that will indistinguishable from his others. That makes me sad for him

Anonymous said...

I think you have to start standing up for yourself in the industry despite all the apparently insurmountable hurdles.

The real question should do you change the INDUSTRY, not gay men and women. We should be looking at better ways of marketing rather than asking them to hide to suit the industry.

The way stars are aggressively pimped for sexual purposes to sell products is ridiculous. The fault starts at its root, the industry machine itself; the press, studios, pr agencies. They are the reason actors cannot be truthful.

A good actor is a good actor and if the sexual marketing took a backseat to the marketing of talent then maybe more people would feel comfortable with coming out. But this is a shallow industry, reliant on sex to sell as a product. It really needs to change first. I believe everyone should be able to come out and be able to do so freely without fear.

I think it will start to change once people realize there's strength in numbers. This industry is built on the contributions of gay men and women who go unrecognized even now.

What it needs is a whole new approach to marketing.

LE said...

Ellen's lack of romantic lead roles after Mr. Wrong had less to do with her being a lesbian and more to do with, well, Mr. Wrong.

The only point at which outing someone will no longer be seen as defamatory is when Americans stop thinking of homosexuality as a sin/handicap/character flaw/etc.

Anonymous said...

Yea, is Ellen really the best example? The problem isn't that she's gay, the problem is that she's a horrible actress.

Anonymous said...

The one issue you have to remember though is to the general public who do not live in NY or LA it was NOT common knowledge that NPH was gay.
I follow the Entertainment news and I had no idea. When asked if he was gay before he was outed his Publicist denied it by saying "No, he isn't one of those". On a website today regarding NPH he happened to come up and again a person there was shocked to find out he is gay - even though he is now Outed. I believe gay people shouldn't be ashamed of who they are and hide their partners/families. How sad to have to live such an open lie.


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