Sex and the City actor Willie Garson, who played the gay cosmopolite Stanford Blatch, has revealed why he never “came out” as straight.
The actor told Page Six that he didn’t like to tell interviewers he was straight during the show’s heyday incase it came across as offensive.
“For years I didn’t talk about it because I found it to be offensive to gay people,” Garson said.
“People playing gay characters jumping up and down screaming that they’re not gay, like that would somehow be a bad thing if they were.”
Stanford was seen in all six seasons of Sex and the City, as well as its two spin-off movies, as one of Carrie Bradshaw’s (Sarah Jessica Parker) best friends.
He was one of a handful of regular LGBT+ characters on the show alongside Anthony Marentino (Mario Cantone). The two married in an elaborate ceremony at the start of the Sex and the City 2 movie, with Liza Minelli on hand to serenade them.
Samantha Jones (Kim Cattrall) had a notable fling with another woman, Sonia, and Miranda was portrayed by queer actor Cynthia Nixon).
However the show was painfully ignorant when it introduced bisexual and trans characters, and Parker has admitted that the show failed to “substantially” represent the LGBT community.
Sex and the City’s Stanford struggled to date in real life because women would see him as the ‘gay best friend’.
Willie Garson said that when Sex and the City first aired, he would often be asked about his sexuality.
“When the question would come up during the show I would say, ‘When I was on White Collar no one ever asked me if I was a conman, and when I was on NYPD Blue, nobody ever asked me if I was a murderer. This is what we do for a living, portray people’,” he explained.
The 56-year-old added that portraying Stanford, who was adored by many women because of his loveable nature, made it hard for him to date in the real world.
“At the beginning, you would approach someone at a bar and realise, ‘Oh, they want to be Stanford’s best friend’. They don’t necessarily want to sleep with you,” Garson said.
The White Collar actor is the father of a 19-year-old son, whom he adopted at age seven. He explained he “very much always wanted to have a child”, but the woman he was in a relationship with for 20 years did not. So he decided to adopt on his own.
“I really wanted a child more than anything else and I got one. We’re partners, my kid and I.”