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13 August 2009


Derrick from Philly

They should've asked Flava Flav to play the part. He'd have done it...sex scenes too.


((So it's okay to portray a thug, murderer or drug dealer in television or movies, but, it's not okay to "play" a gay rap artist on a highly rated show that is broadcast after American Idol?))

YES! That shows you exactly where we stand in the black community. Black gay men are considered beneath thugs and drug dealers, who are praised and idolized. Those are the heroes, we are considered worse than criminals. It's shameful.

Ben Patrick Johnson

Sad indeed. It's always been two steps forward, one step back.

I wonder if the efforts the LGBT movement are making to reach out to African-American faith communities will spillover into the hip-hop community? We have a long way to go in changing hearts and minds.


Wow. Sad but not very surprising.
This somewhat reminds me how few big name black actors have been willing to play gay roles, unless they are cast opposite a non sexual actor, or even usually a white actor. Can't have people thinking you are "really" like that...but it's no problem if people were to think you ere "really" a murderer.

My people my people my people



Is it really so surprising that "[some] agents were concerned about even bringing the proposal to their clients for fear of a, you know, "Are you crazy?" backlash."

Instead of "backlash" I'm sure Steve Baum was really thinking BEATDOWN. Yes, an agent bringing THAT proposal to a rapper would be risking a serious beatdown.

I will be very happy indeed when rap, hip hop, or whatever it's called, goes the way of the dinosaur.


not surprising. i agree with elg. this super machismo thing is killing us and has to end.


Good point, ELG. The agents and managers would risk a beatdown or getting blacklisted. Sad sad sad.

No problems killing someone on film or tv tho lol

D. Askew

OMG, all the celebs read this blog!

@ Ben Patrick Johnson:

I'm a great fan of your work! You're a great writer and I love your TV and movie voice overs!

And sexy too :0


I for one have never been into the whole Gangster Macho at all costs personna... never unedrstood it, prolly never will.

I like men who are intelligent, peaceful, confident in their own skin and mature ( am which ganaters rapper is like that?????).

I dont see any thing positive about glorifyng violence and anarchy while making money doing so...its a negative cycle for the most part.

Glad to see that finally we are recognising that those 'minstrels' do not represent US

Nathan James

SMH...especially since there are so many "homothugs" and DL men in the midst of the comminity of color...which most definitely includes some of these "no homo" rappers. I do wonder, though, if any of the up-and-coming "gay rappers" have ever been connsidered for such a role, since the "mainstream rappers" are too squeamish to play a gay man of color on TV?

It's still astonishing to me that someone like Treach, for example, has no problem playing a character who is so hell-bent on killng other black people (as he did on NBC's Third Watch), that the prtrayed said character crashing into an ambulance for the express purpose of shooting it, and everyone in it, to death, but would run screaming for the hills if asked to play a professional, creative gay man!

But then, we live in a society where sites like Photobucket still consider the word "gay" to be an "adult-content" search term, OK...maybe rappers denouncing us and our community shouldn't shock me so much...



They should have asked some gay rappers that are out there who are out and not ashamed of who they are. Some of them are Bry'Nt, Timm'm West, Deadlee, Sonny Lewis, Drew Mason, Boneintell, and Last Offence. I would rather see one of them or others get some recognition rather than the standard homophobic rapper out there. These TV producers need to start thinking outside the box.


I wonder is Kanye's people were approached.


@ Osiris:

I don't see Kanye doing a role like this. It's not high profile enough and he already us gay baited and many ppl say he is gay. Too much baggage.


You mean they actually had to go and hire a Black actor to do an acting gig? The kind of work that he's spent many years training to do? They had to hire a talented Black actor instead of a middling rapper with all the emotional range of the belt that he's not wearing? A trained and talented Black actor got a job on a TV show following one of the most popular shows on any network? And maybe several other Black actors got to audition and get that little bit of exposure for their careers?
That is news!


@ Byron


You are so right.


excellent point byron.


It is qualitatively different acting the role of a murderer from acting the role of a gay person -- all the more so if you are not an actor per se. If you play a murderer, no one thinks you sympathize with murder or might be a murderer yourself. If you play gay, on the other hand, especially when playing a sympathetic character, people will see that as a form of advocacy of or sympathy with gay rights, and some people will wonder: hmmm...why did he choose to play THAT kind of role? (And gay people will not be the last ones to pose those kinds of questions.)
Playing gay as a certain kind of rapper is a big risk of alienating your customer base, and therefore, I think, takes more than your average amount of courage or principle -- or at least it takes someone committed to the craft of acting.


And I should have specified that what people will be wondering is not "Is this guy in favor of gay rights?", but rather "Is this rapper hiding something or on the dl?"


Um, technically, Allen Maldonado who plays the character "Caden", is both an actor and a hip-hop artist based out of LA. He's independent and not well known, but to be fair he does do hip-hop.

Carter G

@ Byron
Great point! Bravo!

@ Mark
I think you make some good points that we have discussed many times here. But unfortunately urban audiences do sympathize with gangster characters who often do shoot, kill or commit violence against other characters in tv and film. And yes, the core audience will think this is a thug and he is simply playing himself. Normal (=white mainstream) audiences do not sympathize with these characters or think Brad Pitt is really na murderer when he plays one. But 50 Cent or the Game on screen pulling a trigger ... they've been to prison for attempted murder.

The larger issue is that being gay (or lesbian) as Rod mentioned has such a negative stigma in the black and Latino communities. In these same communities which glorify thug culture and thug life, all too many times hardcore criminals ARE welcomed and glorified by black women and black men. And LGBTs are looked down upon, gay bashed, attacked, killed etc.


the actor in pictured, Allen Maldonado, also raps under the pseudonym "Dawone", so technically a (independent, lesser known) rapper agreed to the role.

Presumably, he's straight. I don't think it's "courageous" any and every time a straight actor plays gay, but in this case he deserves his props.


Half of the men who do gay porn identify as "str8", so what can we really expect from the "legit" acting industry??

Like everyone else, I long for the day when we see an openly gay black star emerge and take Hollywood by storm, booking an incredibly diverse slate of roles (gay, bi, straight, comedy, drama, action etc.), but in the meantime, we have to respect the fact that finding success and making a living as an actor is a HARD HUSTLE, whoever you are, whatever you look like, and whatever your sexuality is.


Carter G-
I see your point about the fact that sometimes rappers playing criminals are also convicts in real life. I was not thinking along those lines when I wrote my post, as you correctly pointed out.


Where do I begin.......? Hahahha!!!

Nathan James

@filmfledgling Right off the bat, Stanley Bennett Clay comes to mind. He is an openly gay black actor and screenwriter who's been in Hollywood and television for 35 years. He told me that producers used to admonish him "We [producers/directors] don't care if you're gay. But the public [who buy tickets to the movies and influence the ad sales on TV] won't appreciate that, so keep your sexuality to yourself." So, Stanley stayed in the professional closet for decades. In recent years, however, he has performed as an out, proud man of color, even writing two gay-lit novels, In Search Of Pretty Young Black Men and Looker.

Now, I do agree with you that we need to see an out, young, full spectum actor (not just gay-genre, like the Noah's Arc cast). I hope we see him emerge soon.

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