‘Game of Thrones’ Star Kit Harrington Is Questioning The Lack of Gay Actors in Marvel Films & It's About Time

It turns out Jon Snow does know something. 

Game of Thrones star Kit Harrington echoed what many fans have long asked for, when he made a call for better representation of gay actors and characters in Marvel Films during an interview to promote his new film, The Life and Death of John F. Donovan at the Toronto Film Festival. 

Harrington told Variety, “There’s a big problem with the masculinity and homosexuality that they can’t somehow go hand in hand. That we can’t have someone in a Marvel movie who’s gay in real life and plays some super hero. I mean, when is that going to happen?”

Marvel has faced criticism for the lack of diversity in its films, as many feature white, heterosexual male actors. Recent films like Black Panther and the upcoming Captain Marvel have made some progress in increasing diversity, but there is still a long way to go.

Casting queer actors in a superhero film is not unheard of. Ian McKellen played Magneto in the X-Men franchise, Ezra Miller starred as the Flash in 2017’s Justice League, bisexual actor Andy Mientus had a role on The Flash TV show and it was recently announced that Ruby Rose will be the star of the new Batgirl television series. But Harrington’s director, Xavier Dolan (who is himself openly gay) points out that when these positive casting decisions have been made, fans often comment that the character is “too gay” or “not gay enough.”

But Harrington (who has not starred in any of Marvel’s films) makes an important point: Marvel Studios properties reach a wide audience (with films like Avengers: Infinity War bringing in over $640.9 million dollars globally in its opening weekend) and can use that power to have a large and lasting impact when it comes to diverse representation in film. 

The Marvel comics offer plenty of LGBTQ characters that can be developed for film and there are plenty of LGBTQ actors to play them. If fans and famous faces continue to advocate for increased representation in mainstream media, hopefully Marvel, along with other major studios, will take note.