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Anyway, I'd vowed this would be my last Los Angeles audition. There were a series of callbacks which required a haircut (I think), and the purchase of a suit I couldn't afford. The strangeness of performing in a boardroom environment surrounded by executives was so intense I might as well have been walking through a remake of the video for "Ashes to Ashes" by David Bowie. IR: Once you had the part, what type of research did you do to portray the selfish, gay Brian Kinney? I kept returning to my belief that his sexuality was not up for debate by anyone, himself included.
And that was only slightly less bizarre than an actor who was testing for the character of Michael telling me he wasn't going to kiss me just before we went into the room. GH: I had enough gay friends to have taken a few spins through the happy bars of San Francisco (where I lived for almost nine years) and Los Angeles. I'd worked and lived in mid-town for a few years, so a lot of the 'social' research was already done. It seemed to me that the most direct way to find him was to underplay all the cliches. That was very freeing, and it inspired me to deflect all speculation about my own sexuality.
But it is essential if you want to to tell the truth.
I felt more at ease being bold with some than I did with others.
I was basically unfazed by gay culture as I understood it.
But I hadn't even scratched the surface of what it means to grow up and survive being gay in America.
The places I went to were the worst and most terrifying I've ever experienced. At what point did you realize this is what you wanted to do as a career? Before that I never thought of acting as something that I would ever try. Many days it feels like I'm in an extended existential experiment.
I probably thought that because I was a serious devotee of Burroughs, and Cocteau and Genet, I had a deep understanding of gay culture. And I definitely wasn't prepared for the backlash I got from those who saw me as an unwelcome trespasser.
(April 2013) "For a while, the gay thing seemed like such a big deal. It's just a comedy-drama about people who live in the United States. I've been hit on in a really strong way by gay men who've tried to convert me, and a lot of my heroes are gay. He played a very convincing gay character on cable TV that has changed the lives of many gay teens growing up in the United States (maybe even worldwide.) By the way, if you haven't seen Queer as Folk, you really have to go out and buy the complete DVD sets!
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I was incredibly fortunate to have worked with Randy Harrison as Justin Taylor. Kiss well and passionately (if that makes sense), and move like you mean it!
We share enough taste in music and art to have had a real camaraderie, and luckily that evolved into a deep friendship. All I can say is that if you are fortunate enough to be playing a character who is developed enough that you can mine his or her identity-which isn't always the case-decide what or how the character behaves before and after sex.