It’s A Sin creator Russell T Davies has delivered the perfect response for the straight critics who slammed him for only casting gay actors in queer roles.
The former Doctor Who showrunner’s latest series, following a group of young gay men during the 80s Aids crisis, has now broken records for Channel 4, and widely praised for launching important conversations around LGBT representation on TV.
However, before the series even aired, Davies was criticised for saying that he would personally only cast gay actors in gay roles.
But speaking on Steph’s Packed Lunch today, the 57-year-old writer wasn’t having any of it, hitting back at criticisms and saying it wasn’t up to straight critics to make that kind of commentary.
He told Steph McGovern: ‘I loved it when I said that because I made that theory about my own work, how I like to work. Strangely, all the straight male commentators lined up to tell me off.
‘Can you believe that, Steph? Straight men telling you how to live your life? What a puzzle that was. What a surprise! A marvel.’
Russell T Davies appeared on Steph’s Packed Lunch today (Picture: Channel 4)
Russell had the perfect response to critics of him casting only gay men in gay roles (Picture: Channel 4)
‘It was debated a lot and actually then the programme went on air, and I’ve got to say the debates kind of stopped,’ he then added. ‘People could see what I meant.
‘There was an entirely gay and queer cast doing their stuff, and I think it shines off the programme. I think it rises off the screen, I think there’s an energy.
‘I absolutely believe it, it’s my job to believe these things. It’s my show. I think we did a great thing, and I’m so proud of that cast. Aren’t they good?’
Russell said he was ‘so proud’ of his fully queer cast (Picture: Channel 4)
It’s A Sin shows a group of friends ravaged by the Aids crisis (Picture: Channel 4)
Steph also praised the show having watched it herself, and added she agreed that representation for her on screen as a gay woman was also moving an important.
But she added she feared that his thoughts on gay actors playing gay roles may be used in reverse, meaning queer stars couldn’t take on straight parts.
Davies disagreed, and said: ‘No, because it’s not equal. There’s 100 straight actors, there’s two gay actors. There’s 100 straight parts, there’s two gay parts.
‘So it’s not a seesaw, it’s not even. That seesaw is not moving. It’s stuck. It’s stuck in the straight weight. They own the playground. So, it will never happen.
‘And frankly, if you do get gay actors to play straight parts, we’ve been pretending to be straight since the age of 11.’
I think that’s what you call a ‘mic drop moment’.
It’s A Sin airs Fridays at 9pm on Channel 4, and is available in full on Channel 4 On Demand.