Happy Birthday to Chad Allen! Here is a photo tribute to his impressive career on stage and screen
There are few actors, gay or straight, who I admire more than Chad Allen who turns 36 years old today.
He has transitioned from being the child actor in St. Elsewhere and Our House to a teenager on Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman to a fine man, actor and activist – not to mention heartthrob!
Chad really is a role model for anyone thinking about being an out actor. He is a highly talented, a total professional and instead of complaining about jobs he’s lost because he is openly gay, he makes the most of the roles he’s offered or creates opportunities for himself.
“I came out at a time when they point blank told me I’d never work again,” he told me last year. “I said, ‘I’m doing it amyway.’ It’s nice to be working and on projects that are making me happy and that I’m really enjoying. It’s just a fun trip.”
Highlights include the wonderful indie drama Save Me which Chad co-produced and turned in one of the best performances of his career and the series of Donald Strachey Mysteries movie which cast him as a tough-as-nails private detective who also happens to be gay.
Chad also starred in the film festival hit Hollywood, je t’aime, the mainstream feature feature films in End of the Spear, and had a recurring role in the summer of 2008 on General Hospital: Night Shift.
Chad has always continued to perform on stage and in recent years acted in major productions of The Little Dog Laughed and opposite Valerie Harper in Looped.
Chad’s latest film, Spork, will be the closing movie at next month’s Outfest Film Festival in LA. He is a producer of the movie and has a supporting role.
“It’s one of the strangest parts I’ve ever played,” he told me. “I play a hillbilly, trailer trash guy [named Loogie]. Definitely an odd part for me to be playing. But primarily I produced the picture and I’m really proud of it. It’s a sweet little, funny, tender picture about a 14-year-old hermaphrodite and her journey of self-acceptance. She in many ways represents that part in all of us that feel like they’ll never fit in. I’m excited to get it out there.”
But it’s not all about acting for this articulate young man. He’s also a true activist who stands up and speaks out for LGBT issues like same-sex marriage (He is pictured at last year’s March on Washington).
“The right to marry needs to exist for all of us,” he said during one of our chats. “We have a beautiful history in our country of making sure we extend equal rights to everyone,” Chad said. “There’s goodness in our relationships and in our love. We need to be proud of that.”
Here is Chad’s motto: “To thine own self be true and be quiet enough to hear your inner voice”