Kate Winslet Says She Knows 'at Least Four' Closeted Actors Who Are 'Terrified' to Come Out

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Kate Winslet Says She Knows 'at Least Four' Closeted Actors Who Are 'Terrified' to Come Out
Photo:Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for SAG-AFTRA Foundation (Getty Images)

There’s a long history of Hollywood pressuring LGBTQ actors to stay in the closet under threat of losing their careers, while straight actors frequently play gay or trans with little to no consequence. Sometimes, they even win awards for those portrayals! See Olivia Colman in The Favourite, Mahershala Ali in Green Book, Jared Leto in Dallas Buyers Club, and all the other examples on this Pride.com list.

Given that historical double standard, I appreciate some recent comments from Kate Winslet about the systemic homophobia boxing LGBTQ actors in. Speaking to The Sunday Times, the Oscar-winning actress—who’s currently doing press for her new film, Ammonite, in which she plays purportedly lesbian palaeontologist Mary Anning—says that she knows “at least four actors” who are “terrified” that coming out could ruin their livelihoods.

The Sunday Times interview is paywalled, but here’s some key excerpts courtesy of Harper’s Bazaar:

‘I cannot tell you the number of young actors I know—some well known, some starting out—who are terrified their sexuality will be revealed and that it will stand in the way of their being cast in straight roles,’ the actress told The Sunday Times.
Winslet added that she was aware of ‘a well-known actor’ who was recently instructed by their agent to keep their bisexuality a secret.
‘The agent said: I understand you are bisexual—I wouldn’t publicise that,’ Winslet said. ‘I can think of at least four actors absolutely hiding their sexuality. It’s painful. Because they fear being found out.’

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