Was Robin Williams Gay? His Best LGBT Roles

Robin McLaurin Williams was an American actor and comedian. He was born on July 21, 1951, and passed away on August 11, 2014. He is considered one of the best comedians of all time due to his exceptional improvisational abilities as well as the vast array of characters he invented on the spot and portrayed on film, in both dramatic and comedic roles.

Was Robin Williams Gay
Was Robin Williams Gay

Robin Williams’ Death Exposes A Threat To LGBT Icons

Perhaps it was Robin Williams’ approach to gay characters, which he played with the exact mix of warmth and pitch-perfect irreverence, rather than his eccentricity, boundary-pushing boldness, or superb aptitude for flamboyance, that won our hearts. Yes, Williams was a beloved figure for the LGBTQ+ community for his roles as the homos*xual cabaret owner in “The Birdcage” and the one-and-only dad-in-drag in “Mrs.

Doubtfire,” as well as for anyone who loves comedy and can recognize a genius of the form. Many in the LGBT community were likely more affected by Williams’ suicide this week because of the support he had provided for them and decades before many of their own family and friends would do the same. However, it should also hit home because of how important the freshly revitalized national discourse about depression and suicide is for many LGBT young people.

A new report from the CDC finds that LGBT youth are “at elevated risk for suicidal thoughts and behaviors, suicide attempts, and suicide.” The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) includes a summary of the problem on its website, noting research that found LGBTQ kids in middle school through high school were more than twice as likely to have tried suicide as their heteros*xual counterparts. Several times over.

An additional study of middle schoolers is cited, which found that “students who were questioning their s*xual orientation reported more bullying, homophobic victimization, unexcused absences from school, drug use, feelings of depression, and suicidal behaviors than either heteros*xual or LGB students.”

Was Robin Williams Gay
Was Robin Williams Gay

This week, a group of activists for young people called for increased services for LGBT children in the state’s foster care, juvenile justice, and public school systems. A paucity of child psychiatrists and community-based wraparound services for people with mental health disorders were cited by one mental health professional as contributing factors to Williams’ death.

Vulnerable populations, including those in the LGBT community, were specifically targeted when Governor Martin O’Malley convened a state commission in 2009 to address suicide in the state, and this work is ongoing. A lot more work remains, though. Perhaps it is worthwhile to highlight another conclusion drawn from the CDC-referenced studies: The lowest rates of sadness and thoughts of suicide were reported by lesbian, homos*xual, and bis*xual adolescents who had not been subjected to homophobic bullying.

Therefore, it is not their own identity that is causing them trouble, but rather the disapproval of others. I wonder how many other young LGBT kids in Maryland schools’ arts and theatre programs exhibit early signs of the same charisma and wacky talent that Williams did. How many people are keeping their true feelings hidden because they don’t want to be singled out? Is my struggle with depression common, and how many others feel the same way?

To hone in on the subject at hand, how many more people would flourish and achieve tremendous success if measures were taken to eradicate bullying once and for all, regardless of the motivation behind it (such as a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity)? These are valid concerns to have as we remember Williams, who was a friend and ally to the LGBT community.

His Top LGBT Performances

Mrs. Doubtfire

Williams portrays Daniel Hillard, a divorced father who dresses in drag to see his kids. With make-up and costume, he plays a Scottish nanny, Mrs. Iphegenia Doubtfire. Harvey Fierstein played Daniel Hillard’s brother and make-up artist Frank. Williams co-produced “Mrs. Doubtfire,” which depicts Aunt Jack and Uncle Frank’s same-s*x romance.

Was Robin Williams Gay
Was Robin Williams Gay

It was one of the first movies to directly confront transgender stereotypes. Aerosmith’s “Dude (Looks Like a Lady)” and The Four Seasons’ “Walk Like A Man” is on the soundtrack. It was nominated for Best Makeup and Hair at the 48th BAFTA Awards.

The Birdcage

Robin Williams as Armand Goldman in “La Cage aux Folles” (1996). As the gay, Jewish entrepreneur of a drag cabaret, he tackled homophobia before mainstream media. If I can exploit my celebrity status to lure people to a movie theatre to see me play as an admirable homos*xual man, why wouldn’t I? In The Birdcage, a lesbian couple’s son marries a Republican senator’s daughter. The two hesitantly attempt to be all-American, heteros*xual parents to delight their son.

Boulevard

Was Robin Williams Gay
Was Robin Williams Gay

The drama “Boulevard” contrasts with his other LGBT portrayals. Williams explores the often-neglected topic of late s*xual awakening. Williams called it a “wonderful, tragic movie” despite having trouble finding a distributor. Williams plays Nolan Mack, a 60-year-old banker coming to terms with his homos*xuality.

 

Leave a Comment