Should heterosexual actors play gay characters? From time to time the subject is topical again, with no signs that the different positions can reach an agreement, and it is common for the discussion to reignite when a film is released where this dissonance occurs. It happened with a film as applauded as Call Me By Your Name, and in recent times it has happened with Falling, where Viggo Mortensen he embodied a homosexual man. The latter, in fact, reacted aggressively to the corresponding questioning, illustrating how the issue continues to bother and generate controversy. Neil Patrick Harris, for his part, is clear.
The actor has never hidden being gay, and that didn’t stop him from playing for nine seasons of how I Met Your Mother to Barney Stinson: a recalcitrant womanizer with whom he clearly had little in common. Via The TimesHarris has stated that there is no need for an actor’s sexual orientation to match that of his character. In fact, he believes that it may even have a certain attraction for a straight actor to play a gay, challenging the position of, among others, Russell T. Davies: responsible for the series in which he now participates and which was recently released, It’s a Sin.
“I think there is something sexy about casting a straight actor for a gay role … if he is willing to give everything for the character”he stated. “In the world we live in, you cannot expect a director to demand that an actor have a specific sexual orientation. Who can determine how gay someone is? “he wondered, and used the example of his portrayal of Barney. “I played a character for nine years that had nothing to do with me. Definitely what I would like is for the best actor to be hired ”.
It’s a Sin is a new Channel 4 drama series focused on the experiences of four London friends during the 1980s marked by AIDS. Its promoter, Russell T. Davies, has already premiered in the past Queer as Folk and Years and Years, and in previous interviews he has expressed opinions against Harris’s nonchalance. Davies believes that sexual orientation does have to be shared, because “Authenticity is what takes us to the most interesting places”.