George Takei remembers that it was ‘excruciating to always have your guard up’ while closeted
It wasn’t easy for George Takei to wait until he was 68 years old to tell the world he is gay.
But the Star Trek icon and current star of Broadway’s Allegiance had his reasons.
He wanted a successful career is show business and had watched the career of 1950s heartthrob Tab Hunter suffer badly after tabloid innuendo that he was gay.
As a result, Takei kept quiet as he rose to fame in the original Star Trek television series and feature films as Sulu.
Then even as he began a relationship in the late 1980s with now-husband Brad Altman, Takei remained mum on his personal life to the public at large.
‘It was excruciating to always have your guard up, particularly because being an actor you’re public and visible,’ he tells Michelangelo Signorile of SiriusXM Progress.
He explains: ‘I could be seen coming out of a gay bar. Who could have seen me?…So you’re always on guard. You’re always, you know, insecure. And that affected my life very much. And it was such a relief to be out and not be looking over your shoulder, tightly gripped all the time.’
Takei and Altman married in 2008 after two decades together.