The gay interview: Ezra Miller

In the print edition this week, we have Larry Ferber’s interview with The Perks of Being a Wallflower writer-director Stephen Chbosky; here, our celebrity hunter Chris Azzopardi sat down with one of that film’s stars, Ezra Miller. Miller talks about the cathartic experience of being a confident teen, his happy upbringing and why he’s never met a straight man.

The perks of Being Ezra Miller

Twenty is a young age to have already played two unique characters — from the dark to the fearless. But Ezra Miller —  who was Tilda Swinton’s evil son in We Need to Talk About Kevin and plays Patrick, the lovable outsider with swagger in the film adaptation of the coming-of-age novel The Perks of Being a Wallflower, opening Friday in Dallas — the boy every gay person wishes he could be. Even Miller.

The young actor talked about not being that kid in high school, breaking label barriers and coming from a “whole queer-ass family” — who dressed him in drag.

Dallas Voice: What was your high school experience? Were you out then?  Ezra Miller: Yeah, definitely. But I wasn’t shouting it out. I was unabashedly me. I was always having to leave high school, though, because I started working, so that was pulling me out of school. When I’d come back, there was a certain resentment: “You are no longer one of us. You have betrayed our pack.” And I dropped out of high school when I was 16 years old because, first of all, the form and function of the schooling system never made any sense to me in the context of education, but also there was some ostracizing at play. At that point in my youth experience, I knew that feeling all too well. I immediately realized that I had just turned 16 and that it was best, and technically legal, for me to flee.

How was it playing a character that you wished you could’ve been in school?  I came out of the movie feeling like I had a bunch to learn from the character I just played, and then I came to the unfortunate conclusion that he was a fictional character and he didn’t exist. I mean, to be able to hold your dignity and your pride, and to be able to empower yourself and love yourself in high school, is a feat.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones