Neil Patrick Harris: 'New York' Coverboy, Big Success

9.14.2009

By Jessanne Collins

Neil Patrick Harris graces the cover of New York magazine this week, lipstick and all. The accompanying profile examines how Harris has managed to escape the curse of the actor who dares to come out. As Out's own cover story explored last year, Harris has managed to avoid being typecast into gay roles or otherwise marginalized from A-list opportunities. Case in point: he's hosting -- and producing -- the Emmy's next week.

"The psychological effects of being closeted are well documented," writes Emily Nussbaum. "But
living in a 'glass closet' has its own risks, since any sexual
references a celebrity makes -- toward either sex -- risk coming off as coy,
even hypocritical. Some actors (Jodie Foster comes to mind) respond by
developing an oddly asexual vibe. But perversely, Harris’s wholesome
statement to People about being 'a very content gay man,'
paired with his marital stability, seems to have freed him up to be a
polymorphously flirtatious celebrity, catalyzing crushes from all
corners."

Harris recalls being inspired by Real World: New Orleans cast member Danny Roberts's approach to his homosexuality: "I personally responded to his lack of overt grandstanding. Again,
tricky waters, because if I say something like ‘He didn’t wave flags,’
it sounds like I’m disrespecting people that do, who I think are
tremendously important, but there’s more than one way to get into
people’s psyches."

Previously > A Man's Man

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