Josh Hutcherson on People Assuming He's Gay, Corey Monteith, & More
By Shana Naomi Krochmal
Hutcherson GIF courtesy of AnotherBrokenCompass
Fans around the world have been delighted (and titillated) by Josh Hutcherson's conversation on everything from his Hunger Games costars to the fact that he thinks of himself as "mostly straight." Of course, there's always more than we can include from an interview, so here are some additional moments you won't want to miss.
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ON GROWING UP PRO-GAY:
“My family’s always been a huge advocate for gay rights. I’m from Kentucky and that’s a very red state, so to have people in your family that showed you that it was no different, that they were just people—it’s not like being gay is just another breed of human being or even a choice, it’s something that you were born with. It was heartbreaking that people did treat gay people differently and that other people around the world had families that didn’t even accept them. For me, as soon as I got any ounce of notoriety to bring attention to any kind of issue, it was just an obvious choice. It’s hard in a way to be somebody who has always thought this way. It’s not like I used to be kind of homophobic—I’ve always been so comfortable with it that sometimes it’s frustrating to comprehend how people are not okay with it. And just on a very simple level—even if you disagree with it, why the hell do you care if somebody else is doing that? It’s not hurting you. It really is not hurting you. And if you can try to tell me how it’s hurting you—you’re crazy. You’re absolutely crazy. It’s one of those things that’s hard to talk about sometimes because it’s so frustrating. Like, what do you mean it’s not natural? Even if—even if, which I disagree, but even if—why the fuck do you care? Seriously? It’s just so nosy and unnecessary.”
ON ARGUING RELIGION:
“I’m always curious as to why people are so against it. I’m always interested to hear their views and then once you try to start talking logically with them how their argument starts to crumble. It goes back to faith, religion, the ‘unnatural’ thing. I haven’t read the Bible, so I could be speaking completely out of turn, but I’m pretty sure it says somewhere, ‘Don’t judge lest ye be judged.’ And you have all these people out there who are making it their business to say whether it’s all right for you to do something. If you believe in God, then let him figure it out in the end.”
ON THE GOLDEN RULE:
The Golden Rule that I don’t even know how many times my mom and dad told me was “Treat people the way you want to be treated.” And that’s people, not straight white people. That’s anybody. Treat people the way you’d want to be treated. It’s such a simple thing, but it’s so easy to do for me, because I like to be treated nicely. I think most people do. So I like to treat other people nicely. I don’t understand the want to make life harder for people. I really do think that as much as it was my parents telling me these things it was also the fact that they gave me a very confident upbringing. I felt very secure in who I was. People tend to discriminate when they don’t feel secure in who they are. Because I was raised in such a secure, confident environment, I think that I didn’t feel the need to judge anybody, because I was never judged. Or [even when] I was, I felt good about myself.
ON LEARNING NOT TO SAY “THAT’S SO GAY”:
"Kids are so mean to each other sometimes, and trying to stop that’s obviously a big goal [of Straight But Not Narrow]. Overall just making kids more compassionate and more understanding that people are just people and when you say, ‘Oh, that’s so gay.’ People say that all the time. I said that growing up all the time and my mom would get so mad at me. You’re not even thinking about it—you’re just a kid. And maybe even the kid that is gay says, ‘Oh that’s so gay,’ to try to seem a part of it. But really when you say gay like that’s stupid and weird and bad—even though somebody may say, ‘That doesn’t bother me’—it has to. It has to take a toll on you even if you’re not conscious of it. So stopping even little things like that, I think, can make a huge difference."
ON MOVING FROM KENTUCKY TO CALIFORNIA:
"I just felt like the people were less judgmental. I was always very comfortable being myself but I was a dork in elementary school, and some people would look at you like, ‘Oh, you’re acting weird.’ When I came out here, everybody was acting weird. Or what Kentucky would call weird."
ON PEOPLE ASSUMING HE’S GAY:
I’m sure people think it and say it sometimes, but I’ve never heard it. I know some people get offended by that, but I wouldn’t take any offense at all. I know a lot of people that are gay that seem straight and vice versa. I’ve never had that happen, but if it did I don’t think it would affect me.
ON WHETHER HE’S EVER BEEN ADVISED NOT TO PLAY A GAY CHARACTER:
"No, if anything it’s the opposite at times. It’s like, ‘We’ve got to find you a gay character.’ I think there’s a lot of great stories that should be told through a gay character’s eyes, through his point of view. And I’m an actor—I’m happy to do that."
ON GETTING CORY MONTEITH INVOLVED WITH STRAIGHT BUT NOT NARROW:
"We were introduced by our publicist. She told us that Cory was the greatest guy, that he believed in equal rights and would be happy to do it. I sent him a letter asking if he would be interested and he said, absolutely. So he became part of the team. He came over, shot an awesome PSA that got a ton of response. It was when Glee was at its absolute prime. It was a big help for us, to have someone else that was a leading male and was coming out to support the gay community."
Watch the PSA below: