Luke Macfarlane on Career and Coming Out: 'Honesty is Important'

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Thursday September 29, 2022

Luke Macfarlane, right, with Billy Eichner in "Bros"
Luke Macfarlane, right, with Billy Eichner in "Bros"  (Source:Universal Pictures)

"Bros" star Luke Macfarlane spoke out about the importance of authenticity, telling Page Six that it's even more important than career goals.

Macfarlane came out in 2008, when it was far from fashionable to do so — and could even pose a danger to a Hollywood career. But he felt it was important to live truthfully.

As the 42-year-old hunk told Page Six: "I think so many of the people I saw were tortured and ruined by the lies that they had to tell."

"Hollywood is very important, work is very important but I think being honest is much more important," he said.

Though he's happy to be free of the closet, the Canadian-born actor does keep a few secrets — including whether he's coupled in real life. "I give you my performance and you give me my privacy!" Macfarlane told the news outlet.

As previously reported, Macfarlane recently addressed the possibility that his coming-out after he starred as a gay character on the TV series "Brothers and Sisters" hindered his career.

In an interview with Vanity Fair last month, Macfarlane explained that he had hoped for a part in a superhero movie or TV show, but he was rebuffed because of his sexuality.

"I can literally remember an agent once saying to me, 'Superman can't be gay' — like just straight out," Macfarlane told the magazine. "I do remember being frustrated, seeing other actors and straight guys my age" get the parts he felt he was perfect for. "I was like, 'Dude, I'm the perfect age for this stuff.' And it wasn't clicking, for whatever reason."

Not that "whatever reason" is particularly hard to guess. Macfarlane's "Bros" co-star Billy Eichner told Vanity Fair that his "gut feeling is that [Macfarlane] didn't get nearly the amount of opportunities that he should have and that he deserved" compared with the sort of work "a straight actor with his look and his qualifications and his training and his exposure was getting at the time."

Still, his talent is undeniable. As Page Six noted, Macfarlane has become a staple in Hallmark movies, filming more than a dozen over the course of eight years — including the one that let him be gay on screen again: "Single All the Way," the Christmas-themed gay rom-com that paired him (sort of) with Michael Urie.

"I know my way around a Christmas tree," Macfarlane cracked to Page Six, before offering the more serious insight that "Hallmark is successful because there is a lack of romance in our culture, there's a lack of love, we've become a little bit cynical."

With his role in "Bros," Macfarlane has an opportunity to help correct that on the big screen. In fact, the film has already made history, being the first gay rom-com to get a major studio release in theaters and also the first major motion picture to be co-written by, as well as star, an out gay man, namely Billy Eichner.

"It's funny the way careers have a trajectory of their own," Macfarlane commented to Page Six. "I came out almost 17 years ago and I never thought it would actually get me a job but it turned out that it did. I'm lucky that Billy was writing and being a comedian at this time in history."

"Bros" comes to theaters Sept. 30.

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.