Words: Will Stroude
Troye Sivan might be playing a Christian teen undergoing gay 'conversion' therapy in new drama film Boy Erased, but the young star's commitment to highlighting the ongoing abuse of vulnerable LGBT young people in such programmes is extending off-screen, too.
The 'Bloom' singer, 23, is working with LGBT+ rights charity to Trevor Project to finally see an end to gay 'cure' therapy for minors in all 50 states across the US - something he says he was inspired to do after landing his role in Joel Edgerton's moving family drama, which which hit US cinemas earlier this month and arrives in the UK on February 8 next year.
"Basically when I first read the script, I was like this is probably set in the ‘90s or something like that - it was set in 2004, and it’s still happening in 2018," Troye explained during an appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on Monday (12 November).
"36 states across the U.S. it’s still completely legal to send your kid off to conversion therapy, and it’s been proven to be so dangerous, and hurtful, and obviously ineffective.
"So we’re trying to get 50 bills in 50 states to prevent youth from going through conversion therapy."
14 US states and Washington DC have passed legislation protecting youth from gay 'conversion' therapy, which has been discredited by leading health associations including the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, and the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Studies show almost 700,000 LGBT+ adults have been subjucted to the abusive practice, with half of those undergoing programmes in their youth.
Based on Garrard Conley's 2016 memoir, Boy Erased stars Oscar-nominated actor Lucas Hedges as a gay teenager in the US Bible Belt who is enrolled on a gay 'conversion' therapy course by his evangelical Christian parents (played by Nicole Kidman and Russell Crowe).
Troye Sivan, who appeared as a child actor in films like X-Men Origins: Wolverine before turning his hand to music, has also recorded an emotional new track for the film's soundtrack with gay Sigur Rós frontman Jónsi, 'Revelation', which you can listen to here.
Boy Erased is released in US cinemas now and hits UK cinemas on February 8 2019. Watch the trailer below: