Former Who's the Boss? child star Danny Pintauro admits that when it comes to finding work in Hollywood, being openly gay is the least of his problems. The now 24-year-old actor reveals that he's paid a bigger price for his eight years on the hit ABC sitcom.
"There have been more consequences with being Jonathan Bower than there have been for being gay," Pintauro says in the new issue of The Advocate. "Casting directors still think of me as that kid on Who's the Boss? I'll hear that 100 times before I'll here 'You're too gay' or 'You're too out.'"
Well, Pintauro who three years ago was forced out of the closet by The National Enquirer is taking great pains to show people that he's much more than Judith Light's TV offspring. Later this month, he'll reprise his off-off-Broadway role of a teen male hustler for a mini-tour of the play The Velocity of Gary (Not His Real Name).
"If I'm going to have an acting career, it's going to be based on the talent that I have and the kind of roles I'm capable of playing," Pintauro insists. "Whether I'm out publicly or not, I don't think I'm the type of actor capable of playing the romantic Romeo. I'm masculine, but I'm not that straight-acting." One person who has always kept an open mind with respect to Pintauro's sexual orientation is Light, who he says has been "very supportive." And what about his Who's the Boss father figure, Tony Danza? "Tony had the typical Italian-father reaction," he recalls. "He didn't know what to say. I could tell he had some issues concerning it, and we just sort of left it alone."
But once the Enquirer story broke and the media frenzy ensued, Danza came around. Explains Pintauro: "He wrote me a note that said, 'Whatever happens, I'm completely supportive of you.' [That] was really nice to hear."