Billy Porter had some opinions about last year’s Vogue cover featuring Harry Styles.
During an interview with The Sunday Times this week, the Pose star detailed how his struggles with self-acceptance and abuse helped him to become the non-binary icon he is today. Porter explained that it was his generation that essentially kick “the door down” for queer visibility in mainstream media.
“I changed the whole game,” the 52-year-old actor told The Sunday Times. “I. Personally. Changed. The. Whole. Game. And that is not ego, that is just fact. I was the first one doing it and now everybody is doing it.”
Former One Direction member Harry Styles made history in December after becoming the first man to to grace the cover of Vogue magazine in a dress. However, Porter explains why Styles should be thanking him for setting the trend and paving the way for others to do so.
Over the years, Porter has stunned the red-carpet in various gender-fluid looks. The most popular being at the 2019 Oscars where he donned a bold Christian Siriano tuxedo gown.
Despite being a fashion icon, Porter says he feels "like the fashion industry has accepted me because they have to.”
“I'm not necessarily convinced and here is why," the actor continued. "I created the conversation [about gender-fluid fashion] and yet Vogue still put Harry Styles, a straight white man, in a dress on their cover for the first time."
But Styles is also known to get creative with fashion. In his interview with Vogue in December, the star shared his views about gender and clothing.
"Clothes are there to have fun with and experiment with and play with. What's really exciting is that all of these lines are just kind of crumbling away," he told the outlet. "When you take away 'There's clothes for men and there's clothes for women,' once you remove any barriers, obviously you open up the arena in which you can play."
"I'll go in shops sometimes, and I just find myself looking at the women's clothes thinking they're amazing. It's like anything—anytime you're putting barriers up in your own life, you're just limiting yourself," the former One Direction member added. "There's so much joy to be had in playing with clothes. I've never really thought too much about what it means—it just becomes this extended part of creating something."
While Porter explained shared his opposition for Vogue’s choice, he says that he is "not dragging" Styles.
"He is the one you're going to try and use to represent this new conversation?"
"He doesn't care, he's just doing it because it's the thing to do," the Pose star continued. "This is politics for me. This is my life. I had to fight my entire life to get to the place where I could wear a dress to the Oscars and not be gunned now. All he has to do is be white and straight."
Styles has not yet responded to Porters comments.
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