Love, Victor star received homophobic messages 'from people he knows' over role

Excl: "I'd lean into it and be like, 'OK, and what?'" says Michael Cimino, who identifies as straight, of people who couldn't separate him from character


Words: Jamie Tabberer; picture: Disney+

Love, Victor actor Michael Cimino has revealed he's received homophobic messages from viewers who can't separate him from his character.

"The craziest part is, it's sometimes from people I know," the star adds in a new interview with Attitude.

Michael, who identifies as straight, first played gay teen Victor in 2020, and will reprise the show for this year's second season.

“To be honest I actually have gotten homophobic messages," he told us.

"The craziest part is it’s sometimes from people I know. I think it shows where the world’s at and possibly how much this show is actually needed. It starts a conversation and that’s the most important thing.”

Asked how he dealt with the homophobic responses, Michael explained: “As far as when it was people I know, I would either kind of lean into it, and be like ‘OK, and what?’

"Or I would try to enlighten them as much as I possibly could."

Of people who give off homophobic “microaggressions”, the 21-year-old added: “The best thing to do is try to educate them or realise that they’re ignorant and you can’t really say anything that’s going to help them, unfortunately.”

Michael’s co-star George Sear, who plays love interest Benji [above, right] and also identifies as straight, meanwhile added that he has not received homophobia from viewers.

The 23-year-old told us: “The response has been nothing but positive from what I’ve seen. It’s really nice and touching getting messages from people who’ve watched the show and it’s resonated with them.”

Love, Victor arrives in the UK on the adult-focused Disney+ platform Star on 23 February 2021.

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