Oh dear. Neighbours star Matt Wilson is seriously copping the heat over comments he made about playing gay character, Aaron Brennan.
Wilson was a guest on UK chat show, The Wright Stuff and during the appearance was asked whether he thought he was potentially taking his Neighbours role away from a gay actor.
He answered: "We’ve had this argument come up a couple of times. There’s a lot of people who say, ‘Why don’t you get a gay person to play a gay character?’ It’s like saying why don’t you get a person who’s in a wheelchair to play a character in a wheelchair.”
Right. Then his following comments sent Twitter ablaze… He continued:
“We specifically designed the character to act straight and act normal.”
Instead of stopping there, he attempted to define ‘normal’:
“When I say normal I mean he doesn’t stand out amongst the crowd. It’s not like the guys on Modern Family where you see them, they’re flamboyant and camp, and sort of walk around tiptoeing.
“That creates separation, that’s us and them, and it shouldn’t be like that. It should be all equal and nobody should have a problem with that. And the way the other characters react around my character is that there’s never a problem. There’s never a problem at all. It’s kind of setting the standard.”
Watch Matt Wilson on The Wright Stuff below:
People on social media promptly fired up over the comments, asking why flamboyant and camp men aren’t deemed to be “normal”.
Wilson, who was the 2010 winner of ‘Australia’s Hottest Tradie’, quickly apologised for the comments on Twitter, saying: “Hi guys. Agreed. Choice of words wasn’t right and apologies if it comes across as offensive!”
“The message I want to get across (and this is in support of one of my closes friends as he is having issues coming out) that he is sick and tired of people assuming that because his sexuality is different to the guy next to him that they ‘expected him to act different’. This isn’t the case, and shouldn’t be preached on TV.”
We're guessing users didn't accept this apology as Matt’s Twitter was soon disabled.
Note to actors everywhere: probably best not to define what’s ‘normal’ when it comes to sexual orientation, or humankind for that matter.