Murray Bartlett 'surprised' by breakout success at 50: 'It's really good timing - I'm wiser'

"It’s definitely a surprise" says the Looking star, who's reached new career heights with The White Lotus.


Words: Jamie Tabberer; picture: Murray Bartlett in The White Lotus (HBO)

With roles in cult shows like Looking and Tales of the City under his belt, Murray Bartlett's long been on the radar of many LGBTQ TV fans.

But with his headline-generating role in this year's HBO hit The White Lotus, the star has reached new levels of fame at the milestone age of 50. (He celebrated his birthday on 20 March 2021).

What's more, it sounds like Bartlett's big moment has come at the right time - as he's now "anchored" enough to deal with it.

"I'm a bit wiser"

Reflecting on his career peak in a new interview with The Guardian, the star said: “It’s definitely a surprise. It’s not like I expected it to happen, for sure. But now that it has happened, it feels like it’s really good timing … I’m a bit wiser. I’m anchored in myself.”

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by The White Lotus (@thewhitelotus)

“I mean, I get a few more aches than I used to," he added of the ageing process, saying that the week before turning 50 was one of "inner turmoil."

The former Attitude cover star continued: “It’s the nature – for me, at least – of hitting those milestones where you reflect back and think: ‘Well, am I where I want to be in my life?’ And I am.

Murray Bartlett appeared on the cover of Attitude in 2019 (Photogotaphy: Greg Vaughan)

"We [Bartlett and his partner] made the choice to move out of the city; I’m in nature again, which I feel is my natural habitat. I’m in a wonderful relationship. I had this amazing opportunity to do this job. Reflecting back, I just felt incredibly lucky and happy to be where I am.”

Bartlett is also known for a memorable role on an episode of Sex and the City in the early 00s and roles on Aussie soaps Neighbours and Home and Away in the 90s.

Read the Attitude October issue, out now.

Subscribe in print and get your first three issues for just £1 each, or digitally for just over £1.50 per issue.