WATCH: Lee Daniels Tells Arsenio About Growing Up Gay In The Ghetto, Forgiving His Abusive Father

A week before Oscar nominations are announced, Lee Daniels is still working hard to get some recognition for his hit drama The Butler. The director appeared as a guest on The Arsenio Hall Show last night and opened up to the host about the challenges of growing up gay in the ghetto.

Asked by Hall what it was like to come out of the closet, Daniels replied “there was never a closet.”

Daniels has spoken in the past about abuse he received from his father for being gay and told Hall that his dad never accepted his homosexuality before he died.

“He was embarrassed,” Daniels revealed, adding that doing research for The Butler helped him understand why. “He felt like a second-class citizen…what is this kid going to encounter? After doing The Butler and so much research I understood where his headset was at and I forgave him and I love him.”


Courtesy: The Arsenio Hall Show / Courtesy CBS Television Distribution

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  • Scribe38

    Sometimes the only way to move on with your life, is to let go of the pain of the past. I have forgiven my dad for a lot of crap. Forgiveness doesn’t mean allowing the behavior to continue. But holding onto pain doesn’t allow you to be a good partner or parent. I am happy he is working through the pain and the good he does for the community.

  • Scribe38

    Btw as a kid who was beat (dad) and raped (uncle) his work has helped me. I was in a therapy group when I saw his movie Precious. It destroyed me for a while emotionally. It forced me to deal with a lot of issues and made me better eventually.

  • Black Pegasus

    Lee has a wonderful soul! His success and courage is a template for us all.

  • Vegas Tearoom

    Did i miss something? Is this supposed to be some ironic posting about Arsenio?

  • CCTR

    Lee’s story is very inspiring. I hope he continues to express himself and his stories through movies.

  • KDub

    OMG, he actually is Precious. Lol

  • LadyL

    My best wishes to Lee Daniels. Wonder if Arsenio will be inspired to come out anytime soon..?

Comments are closed.