Billy Porter is set to teach the world about the battle for LGBT+ rights in a new documentary series from HBO Max.
The four-part documentary, titled EQUAL, will tell the story of the fight for LGBT+ rights in the lead up to the Stonewall riots in 1969.
EQUAL, set for release on the streaming service on Thursday (October 22), will also star Samira Wiley (Orange is the New Black) and Cheyenne Jackson (American Horror Story), alongside other notable queer stars.
The Pose star will narrate the documentary series.
“It was really interesting for me as somebody who knows a lot about LGBTQ history,” Porter told Associated Press about the process behind the documentary.
“There’s a lot of stuff in the four-part series I had not heard about before. So it’s always nice to learn something new.”
He continued: [It’s about] everything before the Stonewall riots. I think there’s a lot of information at the fingertips post-Stonewall, [but] there’s not a whole lot of talk about what came before Stonewall, so it’s really interesting.”
Billy Porter said LGBT+ history ‘wasn’t really at our fingertips’ when he came out as a teenager.
The acclaimed actor said that, when he came out as gay at the age of 15, the research “wasn’t really at our fingertips” around LGBT+ history and the Stonewall riots.
“There were some older survivors who would teach us. It was always nice to know as a baby gay that there was somebody out there who was fighting for our rights. Just as I intersect with the African-American community and our civil rights. The two are aligned in many ways for me.
“It helps remind those of us in the fight on the regular that good is possible. And the work is eternal. Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty is what Frederick Douglass says.”
Billy Porter said the documentary is particularly relevant in 2020 following Black Lives Matter protests and other rallying calls for equality across the world.
“It’s about people rising up and making that so. So that’s what you’re seeing right now. And I think what’s interesting about this series is that it’s about people taking charge of their lives and rising up and making sure that we live up to what our Constitution boasts, which is that all men are created equal.”