Eric McCormack is often praised as being one of the first straight allies to positively portray an openly gay man on primetime television, but a new interview with his Will & Grace co-star Megan Mullally suggests he wasn’t always down to play gay.
“All four of us originally passed on the roles,” Mullally said in an interview with Larry King this week, referring to herself and McCormack, as well as Sean Hayes and Debra Messing. “Eric McCormack had been playing a manly cowboy on a series in Canada and didn’t want to play gay.”
Mullally also revealed that she wasn’t originally impressed with the role of Karen Walker, which eventually nabbed her seven consecutive Emmy nominations, saying it was “quite a lot like Christine Baranski’s role in the series Cybill…and I didn’t really know how I can make it any different, because she did a pretty damn good job.” She says Karen Walker’s “weirdness” became a creative collaboration between herself and the show’s producers, who eventually fell in love with her new vision for the character.
Watch the full interview here to learn about Mullally’s new indie film, and hear if she’ll ever come back for a Will & Grace reunion episode.