On becoming involved in the staged reading of 8
I was asked to be a part of the project about a month ago, and I immediately said yes before I even read the play. I think Joe Mantello and Lance Black are both incredibly talented; but more importantly, it was to raise money for an incredibly important cause.
On being a part of the production:
It’s sad that in 2011 we even have to discuss the fight for marriage equality in the United States. How can we say that we’re a country that grants liberty and justice for all, and yet denies same-sex couples the right to marry? I feel that the generations to come will view this time period in terms of civil rights for the LGBT community as pretty sad and unnecessary. And I know that in my lifetime, everyone American will have the right to legally marry the person they choose and that it will be recognized federally as well as by the state.
On the research process in order to play Jeff Zarrillo, the real life character he is portraying in the play.
I called Jeff Zarrillo and we talked about his life during the trial —what he and Paul were going through, and how he was feeling. It was important to me that I understand how he felt during the actual trial, which is what I’m responsible for depicting. They had to put up with a great deal of intrusion into their personal lives throughout this process, and they remain undaunted. He was incredibly kind and helpful, and he and Paul are truly brave souls.
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