RECAP: Wilson Cruz Talked About Being the First Openly Gay Actor to Play an Openly Gay Series Regular on Primetime Television on STARS IN THE HOUSE
Stars in The House continued Friday night (8pm) with Wilson Cruz.
Wilson talked about getting the role of Ricky in MY SO-CALLED LIFE in the 90's. "Winnie Holzman wrote this pilot and in the pilot, she wrote this character, Ricky Vasquez, who was half black and half Puerto Rican. She has said she went to the casting director Mary Goldberg at the time and said 'we're going to have a hard time finding this person.' So they thought they were going to have to go outside the normal casting but no, I showed up."
"I was the first openly gay actor to play an openly gay series regular role on Primetime TV...I knew I had to step up and be the person I had always wanted to see and to be that for young people and to be a vessel really for that story. To expand people's minds. There is not a day that someone does not reach out to me...to tell me what that role meant to them. It never gets old and I cry every time because it meant something to me."
He later talked about the challenges he faced in the role of Angel in RENT. "I [jumped off the table] a couple of times and I said 'I'm not going to be able to do that 8 times a week because of the way I'm built. Landing on those heels and the way they're built...I don't know what he's doing to make that work but I'm not doing it.' And I also thought my girl was a bit more graceful...I did this thing where I kind of lept through it...that was hard. The quick changes were a lot of work...by the time I was six months into the show I had time to do all of that and have a drink of water."
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