Actor Jameela Jamil has publicly come out as queer, in response to accusations that she should not be involved in gay media.
The Good Place star was tipped to host HBO’s new ballroom and voguing competition series, Legendary, though it has now been revealed she will rather be “a lead judge’” on the show.
Jamil took to social media to officially come out to those who had criticised her involvement.
“This is absolutely not how I wanted it to come out,” she tweeted.
“I added a rainbow to my name when I felt ready a few years ago, as it’s not easy within the south Asian community to be accepted, and I always answered honestly if ever straight-up asked about it on Twitter.
“But I kept it low because I was scared of the pain of being accused of performative bandwagon jumping, over something that caused me a lot of confusion, fear, and turmoil when I was a kid.”
She added that her background meant she had feared what being out could mean personally and professionally.
“I didn’t come from a family with anyone openly out,” she wrote.
“It’s also scary as an actor to openly admit your sexuality, especially when you’re already a brown female in your thirties.”
Jamil acknowledged that being queer alone did not “qualify” her in regards to ballroom.
“But I have privilege and power and a large following to bring to this show… and its beautiful contestants and ballroom hosts,” she wrote.
“Sometimes it takes those with more power to help a show get off the ground so we can elevate marginalised stars that deserve the limelight and give them a chance.”
Jamil said that shooting for Legendary begins this week, promising “fucking amazing” talent.
While a few social media users have accused her of coming out fraudulently, due to her male partner or the timing of the announcement, most have welcomed Jamil to the queer community and dismissed the “gatekeepers”.
The star has announced she will take a break from Twitter following her coming out.