David Furnish: More celebrities should come out and be gay role modelsReported by Metro.co.uk on Sunday, 29 April 2012 (on April 29, 2012)
*More celebrities and sports stars should come out of the closet and serve as gay role models, says David Furnish.
David Furnish, here with partner Sir Elton John, thinks their should be more gay role models (Picture: PA)
People should not fear a backlash about their sexuality, said Sir Elton John’s partner. He insisted the couple had experienced ‘absolutely nothing’ negative since entering a civil partnership almost seven years ago.
‘We absolutely need more role models, I think we need more people to come forward and be proud of who they are.
‘They’re out there,’ 49-year-old film-maker Furnish told me in an exclusive chat. Forming one half of an out’n’proud showbiz powerhouse, he added: ‘We don’t do it deliberately. We just try to live our lives honestly and openly but also recognise we can give it some awareness and hopefully shift a few people along.
‘I can only partly attribute it to it, but I think Elton’s celebrity helps. Unfortunately, celebrity is a powerful thing, it can influence people, but if it can influence people in a good way, then that’s a great thing.’
David Furnish and Sir Elton John welcomed son Zachary in 2010 (Picture: Getty)
He encouraged sports stars to come out to help battle homophobia ahead of the Olympic Games in London.
‘You know, in the past year Gareth Thomas has come out – you don’t get much more red blooded than rugby.
‘Having met Gareth and spoken with him about it he said it’s been nothing but a positive experience, he hasn’t had any problems, no backlash, and support from his teammates, support from the club, support from the fans and his family,’ he said. The story of former Wales rugby international Thomas, 37, is to be made into a film.
‘We need some more role models and I think that will break a lot more of the barriers down, we need a Premier League footballer or two,’ said Furnish.
‘We have a lot of great lesbian role models in tennis. I mean, Martina Navratilova in her heyday was probably the greatest female athlete on the planet. Martina just kept breaking every rule. That’s a great role model.’
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