Role opens ac­tor’s eyes

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Health - By JU­LIAN WRIGHT

RYAN Corr ex­pe­ri­enced first-hand the dis­crim­i­na­tion the gay and les­bian com­mu­nity ex­pe­ri­ence while pre­par­ing for his role in Hold­ing The Man.

As a straight man, the for­mer Packed To The Rafters star, who plays gay man Ti­mothy Con­i­grave in the adap­ta­tion of his mem­oirs pub­lished in 1995, said it was an eye-open­ing ex­pe­ri­ence when he held his co-star Craig Stott’s hand in public.

“We held hands walk­ing down Chapel Street and I had my first, first-hand ex­pe­ri­ence of a num­ber of things,” he said.

“We walked into a cafe and or­dered a cof­fee and by the time they turned around we were hold­ing hands and just watch­ing the way the per­son serv­ing us changed their opin­ion, it was my first ex­pe­ri­ence of dis­crim­i­na­tion.

“I haven’t grown up like that; Craig iden­ti­fies as queer, and prob­a­bly un­der­stood this more in­nately than I did.”

De­spite an emo­tional and har­row­ing story about love, in­fi­delity, dis­crim­i­na­tion, the fight for ac­cep­tance, dis­ease and death, Corr said the at­mos­phere on set was gen­er­ally light-hearted.

“There’s a scene not in the film and it tran­scended act­ing for us; the take went for 45 min­utes and we spent so long with these boys that it re­ally felt like we were say­ing good­bye to them,” he said.

“But there’s a lot of hu­mour and hope and Tim’s book is very funny. By all ac­counts, Tim had a clown­ing qual­ity to him; he was an en­ter­tainer.

“It was vi­tally im­por­tant that we found that bal­ance. Apart from the last two weeks, which were emo­tion­ally dif­fi­cult, and the weight of what we were do­ing was driven home, it was a lot of fun.

“Be­ing boys in the schoolyard and rep­re­sent­ing young love and all those awk­ward pre­pubescent mo­ments in the ’70s and ’80s with all those Flock of Seag­ulls wigs on, look­ing like our fathers and moth­ers, it was a lot of fun.” Hold­ing The Man is in cine­mas now. Watch a video of our chat with Ryan Corr at www.com­mu­ni­tynews.com.au.

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie d442789

Ryan Corr is in

Hold­ing The Man.

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