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article imageDon’t turn my character straight, says gay actor

By Andrew John     Mar 20, 2010 in Entertainment
Torchwood star John Barrowman says he doesn’t want his “omnisexual” character Captain Jack to be turned straight in the American version of the sci-fi show.
Fox have commissioned a script for the Doctor Who spin-off, which could see itself then being a joint production with BBC America. The creator of Torchwood, former Doctor Who supremo Russell T. Davies – who is working for BBC America – has written the pilot.
But Barrowman has said there would need to be serious discussions before any changes were made to the sexuality of his character, Captain Jack Harkness.
Hitherto, Torchwood has been made by the highly successful BBC Wales, which makes Doctor Who, among others, and is soon to take over production of the long-running hospital soap Casualty.
According to Entertainment Weekly, the American remake of Torchwood has plans to make his Captain Jack role straight, says Digital Spy.
“I hope wherever [the franchise] goes that the show stays the same,” said the actor, who is openly gay.
“The last thing I would want would be for Jack to become this heterosexual, straight hero. He’s an omnisexual guy. He likes men, women, aliens, whatever. I think we should continue going down that route.”
The character of Captain Jack first appeared in Doctor Who during the 2005 “reign” of the ninth Doctor, played by Christopher Eccleston, and has since appeared with tenth Doctor David Tennant.
The BBC then launched Torchwood as a spin-off. It depicts a group of people based in the Torchwood Institute (founded on a decree by Queen Victoria in a Who episode called “Tooth and Claw”) in Cardiff, Wales, who deal with incidents involving aliens and alien artefacts found on Earth.
Barrowman’s character of Captain Jack Harkness has been very popular in both shows, and the writers have never held back onscreen references to his sexuality. During Torchwood, Jack has a relationship with his Welsh colleague Ianto Jones (played by Gareth David-Lloyd).
Barrowman is reported to have said that any effort to change Captain Jack’s sexual orientation would need to involve a “big discussion” between creator Russell T Davies and his producing partner Julie Gardner (both of whom were executive producers on Doctor Who before giving way to a new team with a new chief writer and executive producer, Steven Moffat). The next series of Doctor Who, starring Matt Smith as the eleventh Doctor, begins on April 3 in the UK and two weeks later in the USA.
More about John barrowman, Casualty, Torchwood, Doctor Who, Bbc america
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