Kevin Bacon on How He and Kyra Sedgwick Supported Their Children in Figuring Out Their Identities: “There’s a Long History of Forcing Children Into Boxes”
Kevin Bacon says he and his wife and fellow actress Kyra Sedgwick tried their best to support their now-grown children as they discovered their identities, including their sexuality.
The award-winning actor spoke to Yahoo Entertainment ahead of the release of his latest film, Peacock horror thriller They/Them, about one of the key themes behind the film's conversion therapy camp setting: accepting your children for who they are.
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According to Yahoo, Bacon "struggles with the idea of other parents rejecting their children" who may be identifying and expressing sexualities within the LGBTQ+ spectrum.
"With our kids, we really did our best to say, 'Okay, you can do your own thing and find out,'" he says. "It worked for our kids, but it's tough."
While he tried to create an open and accepting home for his children, who are now adults, he notes that historically this has not been the societal standard.
"There's a long history of forcing children into boxes, whether for cultural or religious reasons," he adds. "I think you have to hope that we as a society will grow from it and learn from it."
During the interview, the film's Oscar-nominated writer John Logan (Gladiator, The Aviator), who is making his directorial debut with the streaming horror entry, and several of the film's cast members spoke about the experience of making this film in a time when LGBTQ+ has become a minority Rights are challenged and can even be reversed.
"I can't think of a better time to release this film because queer rights are being challenged in a way I couldn't have imagined five years ago," Logan said. “Telling a story that is about empowerment and celebrating difference seems rewarding and very timely.”
Actress Monique Kim, who appears as one of the camp's attendees, says those who believe LGBTQ+ rights are safe are complacent.
"Complacency is death, so we have to recognize what's going on," explains Kim. "People say, 'Oh, that's never going to happen,' but look at what just happened with the [Roe v. Wade] happened. It's a precedent that's been set for decades, and if that can be reversed, what's next? We have to take this very seriously and nip it in the bud while we can.”
The film's lead actor Theo Germaine noted that they are also concerned about the future of LGBTQ+ rights. But the existence of a film like this - which emphasizes the humanity of LGBTQ+ people - can also be positive.
"There are a lot of villains who don't like us and don't want us to have rights," says Germaine. "I have stronger words that I won't say because it's foul language! But that also makes me all the more excited and inspired to work on something like this.”
They add, "It's a project that takes very seriously the terror and fear that queer people experience ... and you see that these are real people with real hearts and souls that need to be protected."
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