Last night, Isaiah Washington made his high-profile return to “Grey’s Anatomy” for the much-hyped departure of Sandra Oh, nearly eight years after being fired from the series for hurling an anti-gay slur during a cast altercation. In a recent interview with FrontiersLA.com, Washington is opening up about his slow return to TV and his efforts to redeem himself in the public eye.
In the interview, Washington discusses his firing from “Grey’s” and how, ironically, he’s recently been getting buzz in Hollywood over his role in the gay-themed independent movie Blackbird, which also stars Mo’Nique. But despite allegations that Washington is pandering to a gay audience to cement his redemption story, he says that he’s simply playing a character that he wanted to play.
“It doesn’t go without being said that someone who was fired for being a homophobe is telling a story to ingratiate or reintegrate himself in the Hollywood system or remove the idea that I am homophobic. That simply is not the truth. I would have done this movie no matter what,” he explained.
Washington’s ties to the LGBT community aren’t limited to the silver screen, though. In the real world, Washington spent many years following his high-profile firing lending his face to PSAs and campaigns dedicated to LGBT equality and anti-bullying initiatives. All of which garnered his return to “Grey’s,” and earned a certified seal of approval from GLAAD.
“His PSA and his statements promoting marriage equality in recent years have sent a strong message of support for LGBT people,” GLAAD wrote about Washington.
But beyond his personal efforts to change his outlook, as well as that of the world around him, when it comes to the LGBT community, Washington maintains that he wants to use his muse to benefit all minorities in the world.
“I have been wanting to use my artistic life to give value to the marginalized, the abused, the neglected, the stigmatized individuals of all walks of life,” Washington said.
Well, it’s still unclear whether Washington can fully regain his place in the Hollywood limelight. But if his words about equality are true, then he’s definitely still forging a path for himself that’s worth praising. –nicholas robinson