How Jonathan Bailey juggles ‘Wicked’ with ‘Companions’: “It’s fame from the waist down”

If you look up “booked and busy,” you will probably find images of Jonathan Bailey. The British actor rose to prominence as Lord Anthony Bridgerton, whose love story takes center stage in the second season of Netflix’s hit romance of the same name. He won even more hearts as McCarthy-era conservative Tim Laughlin turned gay leftist radical in Showtime’s epic limited series Partner, and will soon play another eligible bachelor, Fiyero, in Jon M. Chutwo parts of sinister adaptation—a part for which Bailey scored after Chu found clips of the actor singing online. “The fact that a YouTube video helped me get this job is so surreal and unbelievable,” Bailey said on this week’s episode of the show. Little golden boys (listen below).

On top of that, Bailey returned to Ton in season three of season two Bridgertonbegan airing on Thursday, June 13 and was filmed concurrently with Partner—bleed directly into Evil. He remembers practicing the Ozdust Ballroom choreography during his lunch break back in the day Traveler, wearing buttoned-up G-man glasses and a sharp haircut from the waist up—“and then Reputation from the waist down. I have terrible videos that may or may not come out in about a hundred years—hopefully after I die, because they are so embarrassing.” But again, they felt sorry: “Tim, if he had been born 60 years later, could have played Fiyero in our school play. Evil. And he will love shiny boots.”

Vanity fair: Same as Tim above Partner, You evolved from a religious, conservative congressional staffer in the ’50s to a progressive gay man living in the ’80s. What was it like filming that character arc? I have to imagine it would be difficult to do.

Jonathan Bailey: It was an incredible challenge. For Tim, he’s talking about the idea of ​​religion and faith and what it does for you in the first place. And I think that seems to have equipped Tim with the ability to endure love against all odds. He never gave up on Hawk (Matt Bomer). And Hawk became his living religion and what he believed in.

I was like, I want to see a gay guy who’s as innocent as a fish out of water – who has itchy skin. It’s not like he’s doe-eyed and unlucky; he is fighting from the beginning. He doesn’t understand why the world is the way it is. His emotions are what he leads. And he always talked about truth, transparency and honesty. And I think that comes from a conservative Catholic style of education. So it’s just the most beautiful quest he has in his life, finding forgiveness but also acceptance. But he never stopped fighting. That’s why, to me, he is an absolute icon.

Tim is irritable and struggles internally with his sexuality while also facing key moments in American history from the outside, from McCarthyism to the AIDS crisis. As a British person, how familiar are you with American history?

Insufficient [laughs]. It is not included in the curriculum. But I’m also not sure if it’s actually in the US. This is why we are shedding light on areas of history that have not been included. It was an experience to explore a character over time, but also a history of queer experience — which gave me, as Johnny, catharsis. And being in a predominantly gay environment to tell that story. I enjoyed it, because there are so many things I need to understand about the privilege I have now and those who came before me. The fact that there are five gay actors leading the show is because of all those who came before. And I tell you, people have loved gay actors for years. They just can’t say they’re gay yet.

We have more and more queer stories and queer representation on screen, but these characters aren’t always portrayed by actual queer people. I think Partner proves that it makes a big difference when you cast gay, LGBTQ+ actors in gay roles.

This special explores a strange experience over 40 years. I thought there was a GLAAD report last week that was quite disappointing, about how the number of queer or LGBTQ+ characters represented has declined…. Tim and Hawk and all the characters in this movie were born into a world where they had to fight. And if you have to watch or adapt or survive, if your first instinct is that it might not work because of who I am, then that’s the difference between being a gay actor and not being gay. must be a gay actor. That’s the war.

The show wouldn’t be as successful without your chemistry with Matt Bomer. How did you find that dynamic? Tim and Hawk’s relationship is of a secondary nature and at times it switches. There is a power struggle. It’s complex, nuanced and always reliable.

[laughs] I mean, Matt Bomer is a supreme being, absolutely adorable and wonderful. He has a lot of experience. We met on Zoom for a chemistry read, and then we met in a coffee shop about a week, or even less than that actually—like six days before we started filming. For about an hour, we said, you know, this is an opportunity. This is something we are really excited about. It was a huge leap of faith and free fall. But that’s what gay relationships are all about: There’s so much nuance and the dynamic is so balanced because there’s no gender, There’s no—uh, what is it? Women are from Venus, men are from Mars.


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