#20GayTeen: The 13 Best NewNowNext Interviews of 2018

From Broadway legends to onscreen icons-in-the-making, these interviewees will blow you away.

It’s safe to say 2018 was a very queer year. Some of the year’s top-performing films, movies, and music were made by LGBTQ artists, featured queer characters, or centered gay storylines. As always, our editorial team at NewNowNext kept a close eye on the cultural zeitgeist, nabbing interviews with some of the most interesting and sought-after queer and ally celebs, actors, and artists in the world.

Here are 13 of our favorite interviews we ran this year. Enjoy!

  1. Eric Liebowitz/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

    “In a time when it’s hard to stay present, when there are so many distractions, songs like [’Defying Gravity’ and ’Let It Go’] can reconnect you to where you come from and the people you love. What more could you ask for?”

  2. “When I first showed the rough cut [of the film] to my then-21-year-old daughter, the first thing she said to me was, ’Every kid—every kid in the world starting from 12 through to 16, 17 who’s confused on their sexuality will look at this movie for guidance.'”

  3. Cherry Grove Archives Collection

    “…I believe that gay people need places to go that are gay. And I think the younger generation will hold onto [Cherry Grove] more than you give them credit for. I think it will change, topographically, but as a social thing, I think it will maintain its gayness.”

  4. Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

    “I don’t want anyone to feel marginalized, but I think there should be room for all of us—including LGBTQ actors playing straight roles and straight actors playing LGBTQ roles. If you can’t do your job because someone’s standing in your way, telling you you’re not allowed to be creative, what are you supposed to do?”

  5. Conversion therapy survivor Chaim Levin interviews Boy Erased director and star Joel Edgerton about the film based on Garrard Conley’s harrowing real-life story. “We want to make sure that conversion therapy becomes a conversation in the culture at large.”

  6. Desiree Navarro/WireImage

    “One of the major themes of the film, and it’s in every John Hughes teenage film I grew up with, is the adults you grow up with don’t know all the answers.”

  7. Santiago Felipe/Getty Images

    “From the beginning, working with L.A. Reid and Babyface, they told me the tone of my voice lends itself to heartache. I didn’t know how to take that at 23, but as I’ve gotten older, I understand it better.”

  8. Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

    “You know, every week [when an episode airs] we live-tweet and watch the hashtags. Just the people who keep saying, ’Wow, this seems so authentic, this seems so real,’ it’s because Ryan Murphy insisted on it being real.”

  9. “I think it’s very important for people to understand that if people are being represented, the people who feel they are being represented see themselves on screen.”

  10. Sylvain Gaboury/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

    “I wasn’t ready to come out in college or high school. I think the fear was similar, and putting on a brave face so people saw me as a happy kid next door.”

  11. ABC/Mitch Haaseth/Getty Images

    “What is the dynamic in a gay relationship when one person is out and proud and one person is just freshly coming into their own? That’s something… I have never seen on television. It’s a story that I would want to see.”

  12. Andrew Lipovsky/NBC/NBCU Photobank

    “I’m definitely attracted to stories that cover a wide spectrum of people. How can you say you’re representing even a small slice of American life and not have gay characters?”

  13. Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images for GLAAD

    “Being black and gay, we’re like a sub-level of the community, but what I understand is that I don’t have to feel that way just because people try and treat me that way.”

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