Chris Colfer Reflects On Being Forced To Come Out & Relating To Kit Connor
Chris Colfer Reflects on Having to Come Out After Taking Glee Role
He compared his situation in 2009 to what recently happened with Kit Connor.
When Chris Colfer came out back in 2009, nobody who watched Glee was surprised. But the actor now admits he was terrified to be put in a position where his own identity would come under such blatant public scrutiny.
Colfer played Kurt Hummel on the popular musical comedy, initially a high schooler who hasn’t yet come to terms with his sexuality, even though it’s obvious from the jump. The role was created specifically for him, but the idea of playing a character who would soon come out as gay in the show’s first season left him uneasy at first.
“I was absolutely terrified. And back then, people told their clients, ‘Don’t play gay characters because it will ruin your career,’” he recalled during a recent conversation on the Glee-centric And That’s What You Really Missedpodcast.
He ultimately took the role because he “just wanted to get out and be a part of the industry so badly,” despite warnings from family members about how it might impact his career, and growing up in a town where he watched kids get bullied and beat up for being gay.
And sure enough, Colfer himself wound up coming out publicly during the first year of the show, insinuating on the podcast that he felt forced into doing so because of the role.
He likened his experience to that of Kit Connor’s, the Heartstopper star who recently announced on Twitter that he’s bisexual, after fans accused him of “queerbaiting” for playing a queer character on TV while allegedly being romantically linked to a woman.
“People were furious that it happened to [Kit],” Colfer said. “I think that’s proof of how far the community had come. When it happened to me it was very much ‘I deserved it.’ It was crickets. It was so obvious, so therefore I had no reason to be upset about it.”
We can’t have come that far if Connor was forced out of the closet in the first place, even if it was because of this new idea people have that only out queer actors should be allowed to play queer characters. It’s still outing, and something Colfer called “one of the cruelest things you could possibly do.”
As for the circumstances surrounding his own coming out over a decade ago, while it may have terrified him at the time, it also sounds like something he has since made peace with.
“I also knew that [taking the role] would probably force me to answer and ask questions of myself that I wasn’t quite ready to do,” Colfer admitted. “So, I’m actually kind of grateful for it in a way because I think it kind of pushed me into a path of honesty with myself.”
What is Chris Colfer doing now?
Colfer has written a number of bestselling books for young readers since his time on Glee.
What inspired Chris Colfer to write The Land of Stories.
Colfer says his mother always encouraged him to write, and he started writing this story while spending time supporting his sister during hospital stays for her epilepsy.
Is Chris Colfer gay?
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