British actor Max Harwood, who rose to fame with his role as the aspiring drag queen in the musical, Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, is proud to embrace his sexuality openly while making his way into Hollywood. But he feels there is a need to narrate queer stories from a new angle instead of sticking to coming out stories.
“The representation of LGBTQIA+ community has changed drastically on screen. I sometimes get asked about who were my queer heroes while growing up, and I can only name a few. There isn’t anyone I remember vividly when I was younger,” Harwood tells us.
Cut to the present, the actor shares, “Now, being an adult in the queer space, there’s definitely much more visibility and representation on screen and in the media, with shows like RuPaul’s Drag Race, Pose, God’s Own Country (2017). I think if you can see it, you can be it.”
However, there is a need to explore more stories in the queer community spectrum. “We have had some incredible coming out stories over the past 10 years. Now, the conversation has moved on from that. And that’s important. It is important to be reflected in conversations about identity beyond the LGBTQIA+ community, like identity from the full spectrum without binaries,” he asserts.
Harwood has actively worked in theatre with projects such as Rent, Point Of View, The Christmas, and Spring Awakening to his credit.
Looking back at his coming out moment, the 24-year-old expresses, “I grew up in the UK as someone who is gay, but not as brave as Jamie. I came out when I was 18. We might have a very similar experience being young gay people in England, but my story is very different from him, I not only had an incredibly supportive mother but an incredibly supportive father and friends because I was truly lucky.”
When it comes to work, going forward, he wants to explore varied roles, and do more films. “There is so much that I have skipped by doing my first project. I am hopefully planning to go back and maybe do a play,” he concludes.