Jordan Gavaris Reveals True Feelings of Being an “Out” Actor

What is it like being an openly gay actor while in the entertainment industry? How does one make the decision to use their platform to speak for others who don’t? Jordan Gavaris is sharing it all.

Gavaris, who played Felix Dawkins on Orphan Black and made a guest appearance on Orphan Black: The Next Chapter, joined hosts Stephanie Sebraw, Matt Marr, and Shiksha Mahtani on AfterBuzz TV’s Orphan Black: The Next Chapter aftershow. In this AfterBuzz TV exclusive, Gavaris opened up about what it’s like to be queer in the entertainment industry, and how playing the role of Felix helped him become more open and confident about it.

Gavaris started off by talking about what he was like when he initially got the role of Felix Dawkins. He confessed that he was too busy trying to both understand the character as well as figure out how he wanted to portray him that he didn’t have time to think what it really meant to be playing a queer character on tv.

He’s an “openly queer character, not just gay, but he’s quite gender queer,” said Gavaris.

It was only after years of playing the character of Felix, that Gavaris began to reflect on how impactful of a character Felix really was.

Gavaris said “[Felix] was a person who was a totally fictionalized character, but who I had a tremendous amount of love and admiration for.”

He admitted that his teen self, who was still coming to terms with his own sexuality, would have probably really judged the character because of how confident, secure, and out of the closet Felix was. While reflecting, he realized how much he really loved Felix, as well as all those who Felix represented, and how this slowly helped him in his decision to use his platform to help the LGBTQ+ community.

“I loved every ‘Felix’ out there who I know exists, on a wide spectrum, that, um, I just reached a point where I was like, yeah, I think I’m ready now. I think I’m ready to talk,” said Gavaris. “Whatever little responsibility I have to use my voice, um, as best I can, I think i’m ready to do that. But it was scary.”

There was a lot of pressure that came with being an ‘out’ actor with a platform. The thought of being ‘out’ to the world and then saying something he would later come to regret really scared Gavaris when he was in his early 20s and just started playing the role of Felix.

Our hosts followed up by asking him what it was like having to come out of the closet twice, first to his family, and then to the world. Gavaris talked about how the fear of coming out to his family wasn’t because of them, for they were very understanding, but rather due to the fact that he had to actually make the declaration that he was gay. And then once he had come to fully embrace what Felix stood for, he had to ‘come out’ all over again, but this time, publicly.

“Coming out on a public stage, it’s, it’s just a weird thing to have to come out twice. It’s not a bad thing. It’s just a, just a weird thing. It was definitely a disorienting experience, but I’m really glad I did it. Cuz I think, ultimately I survived it, so I’m fine,” explained Gavaris.

However, coming out to the world has its consequences. Gavaris discussed how it was crucial for there to be diversity in the roles available. He knows there are roles he hasn’t been offered because he’s an ‘out’ actor, but he also knows there are roles he’s been offered mainly because he’s an ‘out’ actor.

“It gives me a very sort of healthy perspective into all the ways and areas we need to improve in the industry, and all the ways that it is working,” Gavaris said in regards to how he felt about the aforementioned consequences.

He seemed positive about the direction in which the industry was headed, although it will take time for us to get there.

“I am really looking forward to the time when we get to have queer characters doing, and it’s already happening, doing all kinds of things that have nothing to do with their sexual identity,” said Gavaris.

That certainly would be ideal, don’t you agree?

To check out the full interview with Gavaris, click on the link above!

To watch all five seasons of Orphan Black, go to Amazon Prime, and then listen to Orphan Black: The Next Chapter, on

About the Author

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Shiksha Mahtani

Shiksha Mahtani is a host and writer for AfterBuzz TV.