“At the very least say ‘no comment,'” he adds, “Just keep your personal life personal. But if you’re going to closet yourself, that sends a negative message.”
He’s also sceptical about those who say being gay will limit an actor’s potential in Hollywood nowadays. Black says, “I’ve never encountered homophobia in casting from the studios or networks, not once, not ever. Where you encounter it is with the agents and the managers, they’re the ones who have an outdated notion of the price an actor might pay if it’s discovered that they’re LGBTQ… often they don’t want to see anything happen that might compromise their investment.
“I think they cripple their actors because they stunt the star’s ability to be open and honest, and an audience can feel that.”
In March, ABC in the US will debut the mini-series When We Rise, which Black wrote. The show chronicles the rise of the gay-rights movement from the Stonewall riots to the triumphs of recent year. The cast includes Guy Pearce, Mary-Louise Parker, Rachel Griffiths, Whoopi Goldberg, Rosie O’Donnell, Denis O’Hare, David Hyde Pierce, Michael K. Williams, Charlie Caver and Ivory Aquino.