ByRob Harris, writer at
Sometimes I play video games.
Rob Harris

Do you have any movie deal-breakers that you absolutely refuse to compromise on? I myself simply can't stomach films with scenes of extreme violence, and straight-up refuse to watch anything starring Sarah Jessica Parker; two viewing conditions I believe to be more than reasonable.

However, a shocking study conducted by Variety has revealed that 60% of Americans are less likely to see an action movie that stars a gay actor. It's dismaying statistics like these that encourage LGBT actors to stay in the closet, not for personal reasons, but for the good of their careers.

Liberty and Justice for Some

Celebrity branding specialist Jeetendr Sehdev is the man behind this survey, conducted to gauge the country's opinions on gay rights and equality within the entertainment industry.

The study was based on one-on-one interviews with a random sample of 2,000 adults nationwide, aged 18-65. Here are the results:

60% — people polled who say that if an action film had a lead actor who was gay, this would deter them from seeing the film.

40% — people polled who say that if an action film had a lead character who was gay, this would deter them from seeing the film.

50% — people polled who believe LGBT stories have a place in kids’ TV shows.

Of course, it's important to note that the survey polled the opinions of just 2000 Americans, which doesn't come close to accurately representing this vast country's diverse population. At least, I sure hope it doesn't.

LGBT rights activist Ellen Page
LGBT rights activist Ellen Page

It's clear that while same-sex marriage may be legal, actors still have to hide their sexuality from the public due to the realities of the business, with surveys such as these revealing the extent of LGBT subjugation within the industry. When box office success is in part determined by a star's sexuality, something is seriously wrong.

Does It Bother You?

By blindly blacklisting movies featuring gay stars, audiences will find themselves limited to less and less media. If you are part of the 60% who would be put off by the sexuality of a movie's cast, then take a look at the upcoming films below. Do you still plan on seeing them?

Star Trek Beyond - Zachary Quinto

Beauty and the Beast - Ian McKellen

Resident Evil: The Final Chapter - Wentworth Miller

The Divergent Series: Allegiant Part 1 - Shailene Woodley

Magic Mike XXL - Matt Bomer

Considering the HUGE audiences these blockbusters will no doubt attract, I can't help but suspect there's some contradiction to the responses given during the survey. Will half of the country really boycott these movies on questionable ideological grounds?

As we edge ever closer to a fair, equal and more tolerant society, I hope actors will be able to spend less time worrying about how public perception will affect their careers, and more time focusing on unapologetically being true to themselves.

[Source: Variety]


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