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Baby Reindeer star Jessica Gunning comes out publicly as ‘a big old gay’

"I did a play with Cate Blanchett where I got to kiss her every night on stage - I should have known then!"

By Jamie Tabberer

Jessica Gunning in a scene from baby Reindeer
"Everyone's been amazing, so supportive" - Jessica Gunning on her coming out journey (Image: Netflix)

Baby Reindeer‘s Jessica Gunning has come out publicly as gay.

The star shared the news in an episode of the Reign With Josh Smith podcast released today.

However, the 38-year-old added she came out to her inner circle 19 months ago and has felt “liberated” since sharing the news.

“It isn’t that I was repressing anything” – Jessica Gunning

“I came out in November 2022,” explained Jessica in the podcast appearance. “And that was a mega, mega thing for me.”

“I am surrounded by gays, like all my friends are gay, so it wasn’t that I was repressing anything, it was just that I didn’t think that I could be,” she went on.

The star furthermore added: “I still can’t articulate it in the best way. But I realised I was a big, old gay. I was like, ‘That’s what it’s been, that’s what it is’. And that was like a massive moment where everything kind of clicked and I made sense of myself then.”

Elsewhere, she said: “Because for so long I’d thought, ‘I know I’m a bigger woman’, and I thought that maybe it was to do with my size that I felt a bit like almost alien or like I was tagging along.

“But as soon as I realised, I was like ‘No, it’s that’. And that was like the most liberating thing.”

“Some of my straight friends have actually said they envy people being able to come out”

In Netflix hit Baby Reindeer, Jessica plays main character Martha, an older woman who stalks a male comedian called Donny, played by Richard Gadd.

Jessica’s screen credits also include 2014’s Pride. She also acted alongside Cate Blanchett in the play When We Have Sufficiently Tortured Each Other.

“I should have even known when I did Pride [a historical drama telling the story of Lesbian and Gays Support the Miners] because I would cry all the time,” she said. “I found it so emotional. I should have really known then.

“And then I did a play with Cate Blanchett where I got to kiss her every night on stage. Again, I should have known then. All these signs from pre-Reindeer staring me in the face.”

She went on: “Naively I always used to think it would be just like a sexual thing. It’s not that in any way. You’re going ‘this is who I am’. And it’s actually really emotional. Some of my straight friends have actually said they envy people being able to come out because it’s like a celebration of who you are.

“I think we’re coming into a time when we won’t ever need to really come out. But when you do it is so exposing. But it’s also really lovely because you’re going: ‘This is my soul a bit.’ You’re going: ‘This is who I am’.

“And you’re getting to have all those amazing chats with your loved ones. It’s really special. And loads of my friends have shared that sometimes it wasn’t really that easy and that’s emotional too. Everyone’s been amazing, so supportive.”