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Joshua Bassett Says High School Musical: The Musical: The Series Creator Helped Him Come Out

bassett and federle

Joshua Bassett wants to thank Tim Federle for more than just great roles.

The High School Musical: The Musical: The Series star opened up about how his showrunner has helped him off the screen, as well as on. When talking to The Hollywood Reporter about his upcoming role in Better Nate Than Ever, Bassett said that Federle, the gay showrunner of HSM:TM:TS helped him to feel comfortable coming out.

"Tim’s superpower is that he empowers people and he believes in people in such a way that it allows them to believe in themselves," Bassett said. "Tim Federle has been instrumental in empowering me to be who I am, truly. Meeting him three years ago through High School Musical and seeing who he is and being so inspired by him, he’s changed my life in so many ways. He’s so fearless, and it’s allowed me to be fearless because of that."

Bassett came out in June of last year, when he confirmed in an interview with GQ that his earlier comments about being attracted to Harry Styles were indeed him coming out as part of the LGBTQ+ community, but he declined to specify a letter.

"Sometimes your letter changes, sometimes you try a different one, other times you realize you’re not what you thought you were, or maybe you always knew. All of these can be true. I’m happy to be a part of the LGBTQ+ community because they embrace all. Don’t let anyone tell you love isn’t love. They’re the ones who probably need it the most."

Now, he’s told THR that coming out was actually the easiest thing he’s ever done.

"What was scary and hard was the 20 years leading up to it," he said. "So, it truly was liberating. I really haven’t looked back. There’s power in telling the truth. People on the internet, trolls, they don’t really get to me anymore. I know that the people that it has helped are far more important than some people who maybe have some nasty things to project onto me. That stuff is just noise. When you hear a message from a kid saying, ‘You saved my life,’ or ‘Because of you, now I feel like I can be myself,’ — it’s the greatest honor in the world to be a role model in any way or to liberate other people to tell and live their truth."

After two seasons of HSM:TM:TS, Bassett is now starring in another Federle project, Better Nate Than Ever, a movie based on the YA novel of the same name by Federle. In the movie, Bassett plays the older brother of Nate, a precocious 13-year-old with big Broadway dreams.

Better Nate Than Ever debuts on Disney+ April 1.

RELATED | 21 Disney Stars Who Came Out As LGBTQ+

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