We reported just about a week ago that Actor Sean Maher Marries Long Time Partner. Not only is he celebrating his new marriage to his man whom he has been with since 2006, Maher is marking his 41st birthday today with his daughter Sophia Rose born in 2007 and a son Liam Xavier born in 2010.
We wish Sean and hos family happiness today and every day. Let's look back at some pictures of Sean over the years as well as his coming out story.
Maher came out publicly in 2011 while playing a closeted gay man on the short-lived NBC series The Playboy Club. He came to fame in 2009 when he landed the starring role in the 1999 TV police drama Ryan Caulfield: Year One. Maher had also had regular or recurring roles on the TV series Party of Five, The $treet and Make It or Break It, played Brian Picalo in a remake of Brian’s Song and John Stamos’ fiancee in Wedding Wars. His feature film credits include the Firefly sequel Serenity and Much Ado About Nothing. More recently Maher have voiced the characters of Dick Grayson / Nightwing in an series of animated Batman films and had a recurring role in the first season of the popular online series Eastsiders. – gaystarnews.com
Below are excerpts from Sean's coming out interview by Entertainment Weekly from September 2011.
“I’ve never discussed it publicly,” the 36-year-old continues. “I’ve never been asked about it publicly, but I would be lying if I said I didn’t paint a different picture.” Maher says that not coming out wasn’t so much a choice as much as it was a reality of the business when he first came to L.A. fresh out of college back in 1997. Publicists working with him during his first Tinseltown role as the title character on Fox’s short-lived cop drama Ryan Caulfield: Year One assumed he was straight – and he didn’t tell them otherwise, out of fear. “I’m 22, I move to L.A., and it’s such a cliché, but the day I arrive, publicists from the show took me out to The Ivy for lunch,” he remembers. “They’re telling me, ‘You know, gosh, we’d really appreciate it if you could keep your girlfriend on the side because we want to appeal to the female demographic of the show.’”
Granted, Maher could have corrected his handlers, but in that instant, he decided not to. “At that moment, I didn’t think to say, ‘Oh, I’m gay,’ because right before I left New York [where he went to college at NYU], I had my manager tell me: ‘You need to get a girl on your arm or people will start talking.’ I remember telling him: ‘I’m gay.’ He had no idea. And he said: ‘All the more reason to get a girl on your arm.’ My agent was also like, ‘It’s best if you keep your options open. Maybe bisexual?’”
But being in the closet tormented Maher. “It was so exhausting, and I was so miserable,” Maher says. “I didn’t really have any life other than work and this façade I was putting on. So I kept my friends from college [where he was out] separate from my work friends, and that was very confusing. I just kept going on and on painting this picture of somebody I wasn’t. I didn’t have time for a personal relationship anyway. And you just don’t realize that it’s eating away at your soul.”
Does Maher regret spending 14 years in the closet professionally? “I don’t think I have regrets,” he responds. “I do believe that sort of this journey took me to the place where I got and I don’t think I would feel so strongly about doing what I’m doing now had I not suffered for the years that I did.”
In the end, coming out publicly is what Maher feels he needed to do to tie his life together, personally and professionally. “Creatively, I feel so much more open and free, and I am so happy on The Playboy Club,” he says. “I think it’s because I’ve never been so open on set. All of the relationships that I have off-camera, I never would have allowed five years ago. It feels so liberating.” – ex.com (9/2011)
Once again, happy birthday Sean! Thanks for being you! And if you're looking this good at 41, we can't wait to follow you as the years go on.
h/t to mynewplaidpants.com for many of the pics
Facebook post pic from HunkduJour.