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Actor John Cameron Mitchell Comes Out As Nonbinary

Actor John Cameron Mitchell Comes Out As Nonbinary

The Hedwig and the Angry Inch star casually opened up about their gender in our exclusive interview.


John Cameron Mitchell, star of Peacock's new Joe Vs Carole series, casually shares with PRIDE that he identifies as nonbinary in our exclusive interview.

Mitchell plays opposite Kate Mckinnon as the cat-loving archenemies, Exotic and Carole Baskin, and dramatizes the seven-year feud between the two that eventually resulted in a murder for hire. In our chat, the acting legend shares how he made the gun-toting, mullet-wearing, polyamorous, larger-than-life character into a nuanced human being, then chimes in on the conversation around gay characters being played by gay actors. 

"I believe that acting means you're playing someone that you're not," he begins. "And I played all kinds of stuff that I'm not, but you bring your own life to it. For so long, there weren't a lot of queer stars. We all know why, because of homophobia."

That barrier is now breaking down, he says. "Let's give everybody an opportunity." But that doesn't mean "we only need to play ourselves because otherwise, it's nothing but autobiographies." 

Mitchell uses Hedwig and the Angry Inch, the 2001 musical film in which he starred in, as an example. "Lately I've been getting a little bit of flack" from some people saying "only trans people can play that role because it's a trans role. I'm not trans, I'm non-binary, but that's a slippery slope because the character is forced into an operation and is not really trans."

We've reached out to Mitchell and his team for his pronouns. At the time of publication, they have not yet responded.

Moving on from the comment, Mitchell continues, "The show is really about drag really more protecting them. Everybody has played Hedwig. Every race, age, sexuality, gender, that works for that. And Nicholas Cage could have killed it as Joe Exotic too. I had no problem with that."

Mitchell does think that LGBTQ+ actors' consideration for LGBTQ+ roles should be prioritized as they can bring their lived experience to the table. "I do like the fact that queer people were considered first," he says. "You still gotta have a good actor, and if none of them were good enough, sure, give it to the straight guy. But give the opportunity. Give the opportunity because there might be something about our upbringing that helps inform the role. Kate's playing a straight woman. She's gay. It's like is that not allowed? Of course, it is because she understands that character."

Joe Vs Carole is available to stream now on Peacock. Watch our interview below:

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