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Andrew Garfield: Gay ‘without the physical act’ comments were taken out of context

Helen Maybanks

Angels in America actor Andrew Garfield has responded to a public backlash that saw him criticised for ‘gay baiting’ the LGBT+ community.

As first reported by Gay Times – who exclusively attended the Q&A discussion at the National Theatre – Andrew  clarified his sexuality, refusing to rule out a period in his life that could find him in a same-sex relationship.

It’s a discussion that saw him confirm that he isn’t a gay man, but that he could have “an awakening later” in his life.

Andrew also said that a certain drag superstar’s show has helped him find his character: “I mean every single series of RuPaul’s Drag Race. I mean every series.

“My only time off during rehearsals – every Sunday I would have eight friends over and we would just watch Ru. This is my life outside of this play. I am a gay man right now just without the physical act – that’s all.”

However, the comments soon became quite the topic of conversation online.

Related: Exclusive: Watch Andrew Garfield, Russell Tovey and cast in Angels in America trailer

Helen Maybanks

Following the social media backlash, Andrew spoke to Newsbeat about why he had been upset by the reaction, but said it didn’t really matter how he felt.

Andrew spoke out against the regard that he was simplifying what it meant to be gay.

“That’s of course not what I meant at all,” he explained. “That discussion was about this play and how deeply grateful I am that I get to work on something so profound.

“It’s a love letter to the LGBTQ community. We were talking about, ‘How do you prepare for something so important and so big?’ and I was basically saying, ‘I dive in as fully as I possibly can.'”

Related: World Exclusive: Andrew Garfield, Russell Tovey and cast on the evergreen relevance of Angels in America

Andrew adding: “My only longing is to serve and to keep the world spinning forward for the LGBTQ community in whatever way I’m meant to.

“It’s important to a community that I feel so welcomed by.

“The intention [in my comments] was to speak to that, speak to my desire to play this part to the best of my ability and to fully immerse myself in a culture that I adore.”

Andrew stars as Prior Walter – a gay man living with AIDS in New York.

Join Andrew Garfield and Russell Tovey on set for their world exclusive Gay Times cover shoot for Angels in America. Download your copy here

To watch Angels in America via NT Live, find your nearest cinema here

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