During a round of press promoting Legend, Hardy's new film in which he plays real-life gangster twins Ronnie and Reggie Kray, a reporter from an LGBT publication did the unthinkable — he asked Hardy if he found it difficult for celebrities to discuss their sexuality, obliquely referencing a 2008 interview in which Hardy said he had been intimate with men.
Hardy shut down the reporter and swiftly moved on to other questions. The exchange was uncomfortable and left many questions. So Hardy later explained why the question was off-putting.
Hardy may have experimented as a young adult and found that it wasn’t his thing. Or he could be bisexual and uncomfortable discussing his sexuality (especially since he’s currently married to a woman).
Sexuality is far from a private matter, even for ostensibly private people like Matt Damon, who often poses with his wife on red carpets. Heterosexuals are given spaces to publicly express their sexuality every day, from the rings on their fingers to holding hands in the street. Heterosexuality is prominently and fearlessly displayed, and queer sexualities should receive the same treatment. Straight men and women shouldn’t be the only ones allowed to have their sexuality be public.
Hardy admits he could have handled the situation better, by addressing the question head on. He could have answered that he’s straight, that he’ bi, or that his experimentation with men was just that — experimentation.
Hardy messed up because there is only one wrong answer when asked about your sexual orientation: silence.