On Monday morning, L.A. Weekly broke the story that openly gay, Emmy-winning director Todd Holland told an audience at Outfest on Sunday afternoon that he advises young, gay male actors to "stay in the closet" if they want to succeed in Hollywood. By Monday afternoon, gay bloggers and their readers weighed in. The gay establishment, though, appeared hesitant to say anything critical of the director.
Most notable in its silence has been the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, also known as GLAAD, a gay media watchdog that usually pounces on such things. GLAAD recently jumped on blogger and openly gay man Perez Hilton for calling Will.i.am of the Black Eyed Peas a "faggot" during an altercation between the two men. Hilton subsequently apologized.
So far, GLAAD hasn't uttered a word about Holland's advice to "stay in the closet," which, if carried out, would have a more long-lasting and negative impact on the lives of gay actors, gay and lesbian youth, and the gay community than anything Perez Hilton has said.
Unsurprisingly, gay bloggers and their readers didn't wait to take their cues from GLAAD.
At Pam's House Blend, blogger Pam Spaulding wrote of Holland's remarks, "This seems ridiculous advice in this day and age, but maybe I'm wrong
-- Hollywood is still, at its core, homophobic because they believe the
perception, not the reality, might affect the almighty dollar at the
One of Spaulding's readers commented: "Todd wants to pretend he's only reflecting a Hollywood bias rather than helping to create and maintain it. So he advises people to create and live a life of mental illness."
At Towleroad, blogger Andy Towle wrote that Holland's words "caused a stir at an Outfest panel over the weekend," then cited openly gay actor Rupert Everett's complaint that coming out hurt his career.
But as one reader noted, "Rupert Everett is such a poor example for this argument. He's
far from a likable actor, thus his prospects of ever being an 'A List'
star were limited to begin with."
Another reader, who claimed to have attended the Outfest panel where Holland spoke, wrote: "Yes, someone needs to break the pattern, maybe even someone like
Todd Holland. But he wasn't one iota wrong in what he said on that
Queerty started off its post this way: "Well this just about flies in the face of every stab at making
Hollywood a more progressive place: Emmy-winning gay director Todd
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Holland is publicly advising [gays] who hope of having any career in
Tinseltown to stay in the closet."
As of late Monday night, GLAAD's web site mentioned nothing about the director.
Contact Patrick Range McDonald at firstname.lastname@example.org.