IN QUOTES

Lee Daniels Recounts The Rampant Homophobia In Empire’s Test Audience

boyfriend3-602x350“I think that, still, there’s a stigma to being gay that we can’t shake — the world can’t shake. It’s something about two men being together — two women being together they can more accept — but two men being together. I’m doing this TV show called Empire and you sit in the room with people as you’re testing the show and you are seeing immediate feedback through a one-way mirror, and they have this knob, where zero is they hate it and 10 is they love it. And they’re at a 10 until the two men kiss, then it’s down to a zero. So at the end the questionnaire asks, “why is it a zero when two men kiss?” And you knew that the 100 people in the room — 95 percent of them heterosexual — didn’t want to admit their homophobia, so they sort of look at the floor. It was like not admitting to being a racist. I think [acceptance] is slowly becoming a think because we are making it a thing. It is the “civil rights” of our time right now, and I think that we have to not back down.”

Lee Daniels speaking to Daily Extra about test audience reaction to gay content in his show Empire. Watch the clip below: