Billy Eichner Talks Streep, Buttigieg and Breaking Boundaries for Gay Men

Credit: Sophy Holland for Variety

Billy Eichner‘s talents go way beyond him chasing after people on the New York City streets.

The 40-year-old landed on the cover of Variety‘s inaugural “Power of Pride” issue which hits newsstands today, June 18. 

He appears alongside several other key players in the LGBTQ world like Jim Parsons, Hannah Gadsby, Don Lemon, Asia Kate Dillon, and MJ Rodriguez.

Credit: Sophy Holland for Variety

His interview covers a myriad of topics going on in his and our world today. Some of the items he discusses are much lighter compared to others, like how he almost got Meryl Streep on his show Billy on the Street and his desires to still make that happen.

“I’ve always wanted Meryl,” he said. “It almost happened once and then it didn’t happen, but I’m really, really crossing my fingers. So Meryl, if you’re reading this, let’s do it. It’s time.”

Billy also touched on openly gay Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg running for office in 2020 and how him doing this related to his younger years. 

“I was a child in New York at the height of the AIDS epidemic. I was a gay kid way before Ellen and Will & Grace. Pete is doing for the political world what people like Ryan Murphy have done in my industry for LGBT people, which is to create a space where a space did not exist.”

Billy is also breaking boundaries for openly gay men in the entertainment world. He is the first to write and star in a major studio movie with his upcoming Universal Pictures romantic comedy, which Judd Apatow’s company is producing.

“I’m honored that it’s me, but it should have been someone else 30 or 40 years ago,” he said. “I hear people talking about diversity and inclusion, but I often see gay people left out of those conversations. The comedy community, which has always been such a straight man’s game, has not been kind to openly gay men, and I still see so much homophobia when it comes to casting.”

You can read all of Billy’s interview here.

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