A couple of weeks ago, Newsweek published an article about the struggles gay actors face when playing straight. The lead points to Sean Hayes’s performance in Promises, Promises, which writer Ramin Setoodeh calls “wooden and insincere, like he’s trying to hide something, which of course he is.” This didn’t sit well with the play’s other star, Kristin Chenoweth, who gave Setoodeh and Newsweek a keyboard lashing to remember in the comments section.
Chenoweth writes that she “was shocked on many levels to see Newsweek publishing Ramin Setoodeh’s horrendously homophobic ‘Straight Jacket,’ which argues that gay actors are simply unfit to play straight.”
She goes on to defend Hayes and Glee star Jonathan Groff, whom Setoodeh also criticizes, and calls him out for his “knee-jerk homophobic reaction to gay actors.” Then she delivers her zing paragraph:
Lastly, as someone who’s been proudly advocating for equal rights and supporting GLBT causes for as long as I can remember, I know how much it means to young people struggling with their sexuality to see out & proud actors like Sean Hayes, Jonathan Groff, Neil Patrick Harris and Cynthia Nixon succeeding in their work without having to keep their sexuality a secret. No one needs to see a bigoted, factually inaccurate article that tells people who deviate from heterosexual norms that they can’t be open about who they are and still achieve their dreams. I am told on good authority that Mr. Setoodeh is a gay man himself and I would hope, as the author of this article, he would at least understand that. I encourage Newsweek to embrace stories which promote acceptance, love, unity and singing and dancing for all!