The man who played an iconic children’s role says he faced homophobic bullying as a kid.
Brian Falduto is most known for his role in the 2003 Jack Black film School of Rock. In it, he played a sassy character who said the iconic line, “You’re tacky and I hate you!”
The character was originally meant to be a tech nerd, but was later rewritten after Falduto’s audition brought a new energy to the role.
Unfortunately, that character didn’t go over well with everyone. In a recent interview with NowThis Entertainment, Falduto says he faced bulling and self-hatred because of his part in the movie.
“In the fifth grade, there was an ‘I Hate Brian’ club,” he recalls.
“Another time in school, someone passed around a video of Falduto with the f-word. ‘It was insulting,’ he now says. “And I remember that was passed around, and then that kid got suspended, and then everyone was mad at me because he got suspended.”
“All I knew at the time was that being gay was bad,’ he continues. “So I instantly shut it down. And so by the time I realized that I was potentially gay, I was already homophobic.
“I replaced a lot of self-acceptance with self-repudiation and self-hatred.”
That said, Falduto later turned learning to love himself into a career. The former actor now works as a life coach for his own company called Love Life.
“What I’m learning now is that it’s actually the opposite,” he says. “We can’t change anything about the situation, but we can change how we react to the situation.”
Good for Brian Falduto.