entertainment

Russell T Davies blames white, straight man for lack of LGBT movie characters

The screenwriter praises Greg Berlanti for new film Love, Simon

2018-04-10

Russell T Davies has blamed the "white, straight man" for the lack of LGBT characters in film.

Last year saw a number of popular LGBT films being released including Call Me By Your Name and God's Own Country, and this year Greg Berlanti released the already critically acclaimed coming-of-age movie Love, Simon.

But Davies - who brought a gay teen to Channel 4 in Queer as Folk back in 1999 - doesn't think the change of attitude towards LGBT movies is permanent and said it was due to money.

While speaking to The Guardian newspaper, Davies said: "I think we should be very careful if we imagine these changes are permanent.

"It's been almost 20 years since Queer as Folk but still, every time I write a gay character, someone somewhere complains, and someone somewhere says, 'This is new!'

"It's our old friend, that lumbering beast, the white, straight man. But it comes down to money in the end.

"Television can be more nimble because it's cheaper: you're looking at roughly $1m for an hour of drama.

"But if a movie costs, say, $30m, then there's 30 times the caution, 30 more levels of bankers being scared, 30 times the arguments.

"Thirty more idiots, in the end. And if you increase the sums, if you go up to blockbusters costing $100m, then you have a hundred times the fear.

"That's why a vast empire like the Marvel Cinematic Universe is devoid of gay characters. And that's why Pixar has only managed the horrific camp of the Ken Doll in Toy Story 3."

"It's not one battle, it's a constant fight."

Davies also has nothing but praise for Berlanti and said it was a "glorious victory" that he was able to bring a gay story to the multiplexes.

He said: "Greg Berlanti is a TV man through and through. He's got acres of successful gay stories behind him.

"To see him bringing that into the multiplexes is a glorious victory."