Homeland star apologises for ‘fruity’ slur
Homeland star Damien Lewis has apologised to Sir ian McKellen after a comment in an interview in the Guardian was linked as a slur on the out gay actor.
The UK born Lewis, who is best known for his work on Hollywood TV series such as Homeland and Life, made the comment about getting out of the theatre scene whilst in his twenties.
Lewis said he worried he would be “one of these slightly over-the-top, fruity actors who would have an illustrious career on stage, but wouldn’t start getting any kind of film work until I was 50 and then start playing wizards”.
The comment was taken by many as a slur against Sir Ian McKellen whose career took off worldwide after he starred in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Lewis has now issued a statement, saying he was a great fan of McKellan and that the comment was taken out of context.
“I am hugely embarrassed that comments of mine have been linked in a negative way to Sir Ian McKellen,” said Lewis. “I have always been, and continue to be, an enormous fan and admirer of Sir Ian's.
"He's one of the greats and one of the reasons I became an actor. My comment in the Guardian was a soundbite I've been giving since 1999 - it was a generic analogy that was never intended to demean or describe anyone else's career.
Lewis says he has since contacted McKellen and offered his apologies.