NewNowNext caught up with Wentworth Miller at the Television Critics Association winter press tour—an appropriate venue, as the out actor is about to make his debut as the chilly Captain Cold on Legends of Tomorrow .
Premiering January 21, the CW series features heroes and villains from the DC Comics universe fighting to save the universe from disasters across time and space.
Looking to break the ice, we asked the out actor to fill us in on Cold, who debuted on CW’s The Flash.
“What else is there besides the menace and the wisecracks?” he joked.
What about his sexuality?
“So far he seems to be presented as straight,” Miller explains. “I’d like to believe there are a couple extra layers to unpeel [and] I instinctively feel like he’s probably pansexual and just gets a hard-on for your soul.”
While Cold, a.k.a. Leonard Snart, popped up to cause trouble on Flash , we’ll see a different side of the character in Legends .
“What I’m enjoying is exploring why he’s a part of this [group] mission to begin with,” he explains.
“It starts out being all about stealing stuff, like ’Let’s go back in time—I’ve got my shopping list and there’s some really cool stuff I can make off with!’ I think the mission quickly becomes personal in a way that Snart did not expect.”
Still, Miller is determined to keep Captain Cold nasty: “I never want to see him wearing the pristine white hat.”
Legends of Tomorrow has a strong LGBT sensibility—besides Miller, there’s executive producer Greg Berlanti and co-star Victor Garber (as Martin Stein/Firestorm), as well as Caity Lotz, who plays bisexual Sara Lance.
“I never imagined we’d get so far so fast,” said Miller, who came out publicly in 2013. He admits the landscape has changed considerably for gay actors in a pretty short amount of time.
“Prison Break was 2005. That wasn’t so long ago but in a certain sense, culturally, it was decades ago.”
While there may have been a time when Miller was quiet about his sexuality, he told us, “I feel privileged to be a part of this TV conversation, because there are people who are going to watch [Legends] in parts of the country, or the world, where they don’t know anyone who’s LGBTQ—or they think they don’t.”
And he hopes he can open some closed minds.
“I’m coming into their living room every week, Victor Garber’s coming into their living room every week. I think that will naturally challenge them to hold a larger space for someone who is LGBTQ.”
Miller also hopes Legends of Tomorrow will speak to the young people who are still figuring out their sexuality. “There’s an automatic in, I think, for any LGBTQ boy or girl watching a show like this, because they inherently understand what it is to be different.”
Legends of Tomorrow premieres January 21 at 8pm on the CW.