Rupert Everett

British actor Rupert Everett has once again advised gay actors trying to make it big in Hollywood to stay in the closet.

The 53-year-old star, who is best known for his roles as a gay man in My Best Friend’s Wedding and The Next Best Thing, spoke to Stephen Sackur on BBC’s Hardtalk about homophobia in the entertainment business.

Everett’s film career has been in decline in recent years, something which he has previously claimed is due to him being an openly-gay actor.

“One of the frustrating thing about a career in the cinema at the moment, in the current climate, is that straight men get every opportunity to play gay parts that they want and then win tons of awards for doing so, but the other way doesn’t really work out,” Everett told Sackur .

He went on to confirm that he still believes that gay actors who want to be really successful in Hollywood should not be open about their sexuality.

“I don’t think it works. The structure of the whole of Hollywood, and also [cinema] theatre owners, come into play a lot in America. The theatre-owning community is another fairly right-wing organisation.

“Also, since Reaganism, and actors began to asset-strip themselves, it became possibly worse for an actor to come out because now perfumes are involved, skin care lines are involved and that means shareholders [are involved]. The mainstream actor has had to become straighter, straighter and straighter,” Everett asserted.

In the interview, Everett – who briefly worked as a male prostitute – admitted that he was very promiscuous in his youth and noted that the launch of his career coincided with the emergence of Aids.

“When I look back on my twenties, most of it was lived with a real sense of terror [of Aids],”  he said.

Everett added that at one point he was certain he had contracted HIV. “I really couldn’t imagine how I wouldn’t have,” he explained, adding that his promiscuity was possibly a reaction to his very conservative and religious upbringing.

Watch a clip of Everett’s Hardtalk interview below.

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