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Chad Allen on Gay Cowboys and Sobriety

Chad Allen. 
Photos by Nicholas Snow.

On the red carpet at the Brokeback Mountain premiere, I asked star Chad Allen if he thinks the world is ready for two gay cowboys.

“You know, as they say, whether they’re ready or not, who cares.  It’s here.  Thank god.  It’s an idea whose time has come and I’m very excited about it.  Absolutely—I think we’re ready to find out that all these little things that we spend so much time being afraid of are all just false evidence anyway, so there is nothing to be scared of.  Good storytelling has the power to unite everybody and I think that’s what we’re going to find out tonight."

“Are you ready for two gay cowboys,” I asked, with my own fantasy of what Chad’s answer would be.  “More than ready, you have no idea,” said Chad.  “I’ve been so excited about this film, this story and these actors.  I’m very excited about it.  I can’t wait to see it.”

 Two more films in the Third Man Out series are in the pipeline, set to shoot in January, which will be a big month for Chad, as his new film The End of the Spear premieres.  Chad plays Christian missionary in 1956.  In addition, the production company Myth Garden that Chad is involved in with Queer As Folk’s Robert Gant and my friend Christopher Racster—and I believe others—is producing a film starring Judith Light.  Last but not least, Chad is co-producing a film called The Way Out, starring David Duchovny, about two old men who fall in love in an old folk’s home.  He’s a busy guy!

Chad has been very public about his sobriety and I asked him if he has ever regretted being so public, and whether or not this has made his sobriety any more challenging.

 “I’m one of those guys that has talked about just about everything that has ever happened to me, publicly,” explained Chad.  “That’s just the kind of guy I am.  I don’t regret it.  There have been hardships that I have faced as the result of being open about myself as a gay man, as the result of being open about my sobriety and my struggle to obtain sobriety, but you know what?  I consider what happens in the world socially has much a part of my job as working before the camera.  Those stories are important to me…I consider them part of what I have to share with the world and I don’t worry about those things, you know.  I leave those kind of questions and fears to a power that’s much greater than myself.”

I feel so blessed and fortunate that I get to have conversations like these on the red carpet or anywhere with people who tell it like it is.  Thank you Ryan, Dee and Chad!

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