Words: Steve Brown
Billy Eichner wants to emulate the success of Ryan Murphy but in the comedy world.
While speaking to People magazine, the openly gay actor praised the American Horror Story creator for changing the game in terms of ‘supporting and using openly LGBTQ people’ both in front and behind the camera and hopes to emulate Murphy’s success in the comedy world.
He said: “[Ryan's] changed the game in our industry in terms of supporting and using openly LGBTQ people in front of the camera and behind the scenes.
“And now I want to take what I've learned from Ryan and my own experiences, help to change the game even more.
“I would like to do in comedy what Ryan's been able to do in all these other genres and help employ more openly LGBTQ actors and not just to play the gay roles, but to play the straight roles too because we're as versatile as straight actors.''
Eichner is set to produce and star in a brand-new comedy – which is reportedly set to be the first ever gay romantic comedy from a major Hollywood studio – and Eichner says he wants to cast as many LGBTQ actors in both gay and straight roles that he can.
He continued: “I look forward to making that movie and finding as many openly LGBT actors as possible in gay roles, in straight roles.
“We not only need to start supporting LGBT actors theoretically, but we actually need to start casting them as well.
“In a perfect world, gay actors can play gay roles and gay actors can play straight roles, and straight actors can play straight roles and play gay roles, and we're all mixing and matching because part of the fun and the challenge of being an actor or an actress is to play someone who you're not.
“We can do it all. I think people really love the spectacle of a straight actor 'playing gay'.
“You so, so rarely see it work in the reverse. It's such an uneven ratio right now, and that is what I'm determined to fix.''