André Aciman says people who discuss straight actors playing gay roles have 'small minds'

The 'Call Me By Your Name' author revealed the original idea for the story was a heterosexual romance


Words: Steve Brown

‘Call Me By Your Name’ author says people who discuss straight actors playing gay roles have ‘small minds’.

André Aciman’s LGBTQ novel was turned into the critically acclaimed 2017 film and starred two straight actors Timothée Chalamet and Armie Hammer as Elio and Oliver respectively.

Over the years, more and more LGBTQ stories have landed in mainstream cinema but it sparked the discussion about straight actors playing gay roles.

And now Aciman has weighed into the discussion and argued that people who discuss it have ‘small minds’.

He told The Independent: “I leave it to people with small minds to discuss that. I find it tiresome.

“I came up with the perfect metaphor on the matter: If you’re going to have a movie about Jesus Christ, does his mother have to be a virgin?”

The author also opened up about how he first envisioned the story with a heterosexual couple but said he is glad it took a different turn.

He said: “That’s how the story started until I decided to take a totally different turn, and I am exceptionally pleased that I did.

“I like writing about people finding themselves in mildly unusual situations. An adolescent girl and adolescent boy presented a situation that was quite ordinary.

“But an adolescent drawn to someone of his same sex presented all manner of psychological hurdles, and that is what I love to write about.”

The upcoming sequel to the 2007 novel, ‘Find Me’, is set to be released at the end of this month.