Monday, December 27, 2010

Richard Chamberlain Tells Actors Not To Come Out


Richard Chamberlain came out as a gay actor quite some time ago, but in a recent interview with The Advocate, he advises all actors to never come out. "For an actor to be working is a kind of miracle, because most actors aren't, so it's just silly for a working actor to say, Oh, I don't care if anybody knows I'm gay" - especially if you're a leading man.
Personally, I wouldn't advise a gay leading man-type actor to come out."

Considering that Richard did not come out until he was 69, and lived as a closeted actor for that entire time, I do think his insight is valuable, but I also do wonder if now is the same as it was when he was young. Times have changed and there are actors who have come out and had successful careers as leading men and others have not. It is an interesting debate.

28 comments:

Ms. said...

He's right, unfortunately. Not many actors could survive the stigma from middle America.

One step towards destigmatizing it is for gossip columnists to quit with the blind items about who's gay. Maybe that will help to move attitudes along.

When I think of the discussions on this site and others about someone's sexuality, gawd, I wonder why any actor would come out.

ms snarky said...

I don't care if a leading man is gay or not....despite all the rumors, I still want Cary Grant to be my boyfriend. also I'd like him to be alive and 40 years old.

However, this advice is sadly accurate for most leading-man type actors. There's too much predjudice in the world for directors and producers to cast on talent rather than sexual preference.

__-__=__ said...

Um, yes, it's still the same as when he was young. When children stop killing themselves because they are gay we will know things have changed. But, until that time, things are probably the same.

timebob said...

After Ricky Martin came out. Every article I have ever read since. At some point says "the openly gay singer". I never read Billy Joel "the openly straight singer".

The media needs to stop labeling people so much based on their sexuality. It gets in peoples heads too much.

Just let people be themselves and then actors/actresses wouldn't have to get up on soapboxes declaring sexuality so much.

Anderson Cooper said I will never reveal my sexualtity becuase then that is all people will think of me. And I gotta say he is right.

JJ said...

timebob, you make a really good point with the 'openly gay' tag. I never really thought about it in those terms but I agree with you.

Times are changing, but at a very slow pace.

Merlin D. Bear said...

Chamberlain is a dinosaur.
During his heyday, yeah, it was a really big deal and a career ender.
Today? Not so much.
But Chamberlain has so internalized his own homophobia that it's actually kind of beneficial in and of itself to listen to his comments and use them to educate - so we don't see such a thing happen again.

childeroland said...

Folks like Ted Casablancas (who I like despite my inability to understand his writing) and Perez Hilton (who is a turd) can't have it both ways. One can't make a big deal about who or who may not be gay and then be saddened by the truth of what Chamberlain has said. Of course I'm guilty of this myself...

Robert said...

George Carlin make a comment about the "openly" tag once; someone can be called "openly gay," but is someone ever called (for example) "openly black?"
Perez is off-putting not only for his high-school hatefulness, and trying to out celebrities whether they want to be or not, he suffers from Kathy Griffin syndrome--a Hollywood "outsider" who used that schtick as their ticket to the red carpet. Those two may mock celebrities, but they can't get their noses up there far enough!

jbdean_79 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
G said...

@jbdean I think I read Rupert say the same thing. He had a promising career but the "label" of being gay limits him. There are not too many actors that could be successful (especially a non-established one) if they were out. Neil Patrick Harris and Portia DeRossi are probably two of the only exceptions to the rule. How many others are gay but say closeted? Many.

KellyLynn said...

How about taking a page from Kevin Spacey and refusing to talk about your sexuality? It hasn't hurt his career one bit.
I agree with jdbean. Richard Chamberlin's career wasn't hurt by his sexual preference. It was hurt by his lack of acting ability.

looserdude said...

I don't think anyone who ever saw "The Music Lovers" thought Richard Chamberlain was straight. I certainly didn't. By the way it's a great movie if you haven't seen it.

G said...

I still agree with Anderson Cooper and how he would be forever labeled. Ellen and Rosie are forever the "out" lesbians.

Also, someone mentioned Perez Hilton. I read his site daily, and it's been a LONG while since he has done the sexuality questioning like he used to once upon a time. He's still childish in his comments, but he seems to be more respectful of others' sexuality. Matter of fact, he even said something positive about Joe Jonas' relationship which everyone else claims is a fraud.

Anyone else notice this about his site?

timebob said...

@G after the rash of teen suicides from bullying. A lot of people called Perez out on his "outing" of gay people as bullying.

He went on Ellen and declared that he would no longer bash people in the closet and it wasn't right what he did. He would continue his gossip blog but be more respectful about people's sexuality. Which so far he has and I don't think his traffic has hurt for it.

Cheryl said...

I get what he's saying, especially the leading man actors. NPH can play a straight character, but he's a comedic character actor. Portia De Rossi is very pretty and men aren't put off by hot lesbians. (I feel like a jerk stating that but it's pretty much true) Rupert Everett doesn't work as much as he would have if he hadn't come out though with him it's more about his bad attitude.

However, as Merlin said, he is a dinosaur and things have changed. Most people aren't upset when someone comes out and RC's career is long gone.

canadachick said...

Dear Jake, don't listen to him. I will love you more if you admit to being gay and stop dating that stupid girl Taylor....

love
Canada Chick

Tin said...

He's not wrong, but at the same time, until more and more people (including actors, politicians and others in the public eye) come out, things aren't going to change. It sucks to have to be the one to deal with the sacrifice and the burden, but it's necessary.

Pookie said...

taylor is many things, stupid isn't one of them.

and hmmm...so i guess now we know where tom cruise gets his advice! interesting.

JoElla said...

I hate to admit this, but I do see Richard's point.

I don't care if a person is gay in real life, and plays a "heart throb" I just look forward to being entertained.

But... many cannot see past a persons preference. And that is really sad IMO.

Nosey Parker said...

Great posts timebob! ITA

Little Miss Smoke and Mirrors said...

I get what he is saying, and he is speaking from his own experience, so I can't really fault him for that.

I look at a couple actors who came out around the same time a couple years ago, NPH and TR Knight, and compare their careers. One seems to have been completely unaffected by coming out, the other doesn't seem to work much anymore. I'd say the difference is less sexual orientation and more about talent.

audieh_1 said...

All this love from people who can't look past an actor's choice of religion to go see a movie. Interesting.

Selock said...

While I'd like it to be otherwise, I don't think society is mature enough. even "progressive" people obsess and tease over orientation factoids. Even HERE on this blog! Bummer. I think it has changed though, and can change more in the future, though!

ardleigh said...

RC thinks he doesn't get more work because he came out? I heard it was a prick to his co-workers and crew. Go figure.

c17 said...

So senility has set in for Mr. Chamberlain. Too bad.

ChasingHeaven said...

I bet a lot of people thought Rosa Parks should have given up her seat. I bet a lot of people thought they should follow Hitler too. Yeah, he's right, don't come out, you may lose some money and absolutely nothing could possibly be gained from it.

MCH said...

While I don't think his statement helps the progression, I see his point. I wish there would be more examples of someone like NPH so people wouldn't be afraid, but there are probably more stories where it hurt than helped, which is sad.

Amazing Quotes said...

very nice and interesting post
Great Quotes - Fitness Quotes
Best Quotes - Success Quotes
Positive Life Quotes - Image Bank
Future Quotes
اقوال وحكم - حكم واقوال

Advertisement

Popular Posts from the last 30 days