Openly Gay Director Todd Holland Advises Young Hollywood To Remain Proudly Closeted
If you happen to be in the Los Angeles area this week, you can catch Outfest, one of the largest gay, lesbian and transBono'd film festivals in the country. In addition to a strong lineup of feature films and shorts offering a welcome, dildo-free alternative to the exploits of Brüno and friends, this year's fest hosts the Strand Releasing 20th anniversary program, as well as a variety of panels -- there's still tickets available for God Only Knows: A Look at 'Big Love' and A Li'l Bit of 'Glee,' for any polygamist showtune-lovers among you. (Insert Seven Brides for One Brother joke here.)
At yesterday's chat at the Directors Guild of America building -- the galvanizingly titled Taking It to the Streets: LGBT Directors Get Political -- a number of gay and gay-friendly directors discussed the logistics of being queer behind the camera. Among the panelists were Outrage director Kirby Dick (straight, but closeted-Republican-curious) and industry veteran Todd Holland, whose Emmy-winning career includes everything from Fred Savage 8-bit odyssey The Wizard to The Larry Sanders Show to Jon Hamm's recent guest-starring turn on 30 Rock.
LA Weekly reports that Holland advised "young, gay male actors to 'stay in the closet.' ... [He] explained that it's a necessary career choice if a gay actor wants to succeed in Hollywood."
Holland's sentiments certainly don't echo the "Out of the closets and into hair and makeup!" battle call espoused by a new generation of openly gay stars, but it does raise questions as to whether or not the advice might contain a kernel of pragmatic truth. For as long as there are straight actors willing to orally stimulate ghostly apparitions of Milli Vanilli to climax on the silver screen, out talent will continue to find even those prestige gay roles going directly to their hetero competition.