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Sean Hayes Says He Owes The Gay Community An Apology For Coming Out Too Late

Three years ago, Sean Hayes publicly came out as gay, but the former "Will & Grace" star thinks it wasn't soon enough.

In a recent interview with the Los Angeles Times, the actor was asked about the controversy surrounding his "Will & Grace" character, Jack McFarland, and the fact that he might be "too gay."

"I was so young," Hayes said. "It made me go back in the closet [with the media] because I was so overwhelmed at 26 or 27. I didn't want the responsibility, I didn't know how to handle the responsibility of speaking for the gay community. I always felt like I owed them a huge apology for coming out too late. Some people in the gay community were very upset with me for not coming out on their terms. They don't stop to think about what's going on in somebody's personal life, and the struggles that they're having. It was all very scary. We got death threats. It was a really rough time for me, but I was also having the time of my life."

The 43-year-old faced years of criticism from The Advocate and other media outlets following the debut of the show in 1998 for his failing to address the "open secret" that was his sexual orientation, Us Weekly previously noted.

But in 2010, Hayes defended himself in an interview with The Advocate saying: “I am who I am. I was never in, as they say. Never." Adding, “I feel like I’ve contributed monumentally to the success of the gay movement in America, and if anyone wants to argue that, I’m open to it. You’re welcome, Advocate.”

Now, in his new NBC series, "Sean Saves the World," he plays a single gay father raising a teenage daughter. Although the plotline may be progressive, he claims he isn't trying to tout any message about gay parenthood, even though he is more honest about his own lifestyle nowadays.

"I want to make people laugh first, and that's it," he explained to the LA Times. "If a byproduct of that is enlightening somebody to something they wouldn't otherwise have been exposed to, then great, but that's certainly not the agenda or the intent of the show."

by Miareply 2010/29/2013

I think all of that is reasonable. I'm surprised he's addressing these criticisms without being defensive and bitchy about it, which is the way he's always come off before. Makes me like him a bit more.

by Miareply 110/28/2013

[all posts by racist flame bait troll removed, ISP notified with full text of all posts.]

by Miareply 210/28/2013

The very people damaging us, are the very people that say were damaged. Kudos to Sean for rising above the BS.

by Miareply 310/28/2013

When is he going to apologize for "Sean Saves the World"?"

by Miareply 410/28/2013

They featured a house he put on the market five years ago and it oozed middle-class Winnetka queen: tasteful plaids, muted florals, tons of beige.

by Miareply 510/28/2013

Remember when he took a beard to the GLAAD awards?

At least he's being honest now

by Miareply 610/28/2013

Truth be told, we suspected.

by Miareply 710/28/2013

"It's divisive and hateful to vilify gays who don't live up to other people's coming out expectations."

Who "vilified" him? And since when are closeted actors martyrs?!

by Miareply 910/28/2013

R8 = closeted actor.

by Miareply 1010/28/2013

Liberace never came out. I am just sure he was bi at least, just sure of it.

by Miareply 1110/28/2013

Translation: "You queers better watch my new show. You OWE it to me!"

Talk about a day late and several dollars short.

Quit while you're ahead, Hayes.

by Miareply 1210/28/2013

R12 nail it.

by Miareply 1310/29/2013

"So now that I got that OUT of the way please watch my show and support me, a gay man, because it is important that the gay community support me, a gay man, doing a show about a gay man. Did I MENtion that the show is about a gay man?"

by Miareply 1410/29/2013

God, I hate actors.

by Miareply 1510/29/2013

Is he ever going to apologize for Up All Night?

by Miareply 1610/29/2013

Why is out gay man Sean Hayes on The View today? He deflected a question about his sexuality. Just ignored it, really. Is he trying to cut a deal with CBS to pick up his show if NBC cancels it or is he pitching more pilots to Lez Moonves?

by Miareply 1710/29/2013

Whoops, meant The Talk. He's on The Talk with out lesbian Sara Gilbert.

by Miareply 1810/29/2013

The biggest apology needs to be for that Stepin Fetchit gay stereotype he perpetrated.

by Miareply 1910/29/2013

He needs to apologize for Sean Saves the World again. and stop blaming NBC, the network that made him rich beyond his dew ams and his talent.

by Miareply 2010/29/2013
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