In an interview with Variety to promote her latest film 'Happiest Season', Kristen Stewart revealed her thoughts on the question of whether only gay actors should play gay characters.
In 'Happiest Season', Stewart plays Abby opposite Mackenzie Davis' character Harper. They are a happy couple, and Abby plans to propose. But Harper has not come out to her parents yet, and Abby is visiting them for Christmas.
Stewart came out in 2017 as bisexual. When asked by Variety about her stance on whether only gay actors should play gay characters, the actress spoke about recognising how privileged and fortunate her career has been.
She said: "I think about this all the time. Being somebody who has had so much access to work, I’ve just lived with such a creative abundance.
"You know, a young white girl who was straight and only really was gay later and is, like, skinny — do you know what I’m saying? I so acknowledge that I’ve just gotten to work."
The actress continued: "I would never want to tell a story that really should be told by somebody who’s lived that experience. Having said that, it’s a slippery slope conversation because that means I could never play another straight character if I’m going to hold everyone to the letter of this particular law.
"I think it’s such a gray area. There are ways for men to tell women’s stories, or ways for women to tell men’s stories.
"But we need to have our finger on the pulse and actually have to care. You kind of know where you’re allowed. I mean, if you’re telling a story about a community and they’re not welcoming to you, then f*** off. But if they are, and you’re becoming an ally and a part of it and there’s something that drove you there in the first place that makes you uniquely endowed with a perspective that might be worthwhile, there’s nothing wrong with learning about each other.
"And therefore helping each other tell stories. So I don’t have a sure-shot answer for that."
She concluded: "I absolutely would never want to traipse on someone else’s opportunity to do that — I would feel terrible about that.
"So my answer is think about what you’re doing! And don’t be an asshole."