Non-Gay Actors Playing Gay: ‘It’s A Sin’ Says Russell T. Davies

The eagerly-awaited new drama from director Russell T Davies ‘It’s A Sin’ is airing on Channel 4. A veteran of ‘Dr Who’ and ‘Queer As Folk’ Davies has been sharing his thoughts on whether in 2021 non-gay actors should be playing gay for the big and small screen.

Speaking to the Radio Times Davies was unequivocal: "I'm not being woke about this.

"But I feel strongly that if I cast someone in a story, I am casting them to act as a lover, or an enemy, or someone on drugs or a criminal or a saint... they are not there to 'act gay' because 'acting gay' is a bunch of codes for a performance." He added: "You wouldn't cast someone able-bodied and put them in a wheel chair, you would black someone up."

‘It’s A Sin’ tracks back to the AIDS crisis in the 80s and stars Olly Alexander from Years & Years as an aspiring actor as part of a trio arriving in the London in 1981 facing the paradox of newfound freedom alongside a newly-discovered and fatal disease. Stephen Fry and Neil Patrick Harris also feature.

Casting non-gay performers is colloquially known as ‘gay face’ with James Corden being identified as such for his performance in the recent ‘The Proms’.

‘It’s A Sin’ airs on January 22nd on Channel 4.

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