In 2010, The Danish Girl star Amber Heard came out as bisexual even though she was told it might negatively effect her Hollywood career.
“Well, I always say in response – when I hear someone comment about me coming out, I think it’s funny because I was never in,” she said at The Economist’s second-annual Pride & Prejudice Summit in New York. “In part because I was very stubborn, I guess, and also in part because I just didn’t feel like it was wrong.”
In 2010, Heard took her then-girlfriend of four years Tasya van Ree to an event and realized opening up to a reporter was a big deal.
“I was always out. I was an activist,” she said. “I went to protests. I refused to not bring my partner at the time, but no one ever asked me about it. And an outlet specifically asked me who I was there with that night and who that person was to me and I just answered honestly, the way I always answered had there not been a tape recorder on me.”
Heard said that after that, she was attached to a label.
“I never have myself defined by the person I’m with,” she said. “I never saw myself defined as one particular thing or not. So, I watched as I quickly became not actress Amber Heard, but out lesbian Amber Heard.”
And, her career was negatively impacted.
“It did impact my career,” she said. “It was difficult. It was not easy. I was the only one working in this way, so it was definitely difficult because no one had done it. I did that even thought everyone told me it would end my career, without a doubt.”
Heard said she would get questioned if she could convincingly play a straight woman in a romantic role.
“I rolled my eyes at that,” she said. “And I said, ‘Watch me do it.’ And I did it.”
Most recently, Heard was in the news for her public split with actor Johnny Depp. The couple filed for divorce in May and a week later, Heard filed for a domestic violence restraining order against Depp. Instead of the alleged abuse being at the forefront of the media, Heard’s sexual orientation was most talked about.
“[Bisexuality is] just here for headlines and it does not help the problem,” actress Rachel Evan Wood said about her friend Heard at the time of the divorce. “Especially when people refer to [Heard] they wouldn’t use that word until it was necessary. It was an easy target and it was unfair.”
The couple finalized their divorce nearly eight months after it started, in January of this year.
Also On The Web