Kit Williamson is living the good life. Young and handsome, he’s a steadily working actor in the often-cutthroat world of Hollywood. He’s also preparing for his wedding.
Williamson’s dreams have true.
It’s been an uplifting journey for the rising young star who’s now saying goodbye to his recurring role as Ed in AMC’s wildly popular series “Mad Men,” which just ended after an acclaimed eight-year run.
It might have been quite challenging for Williamson to live his dream in the not-too-distant past, but LGBT people can now increasingly pursue show-business careers without fear of reprisal. Many projects loom on Williamson’s horizon, who spoke to PGN about what lies in store for him.
But first, he took a look back at “Mad Men.”
“I played Ed Gifford, a copywriter working under Peggy,” Williamson told us. “Ed’s sexual orientation is left kind of ambiguous. At one point, Stan gets confused by Ed’s interest in Pima, a bisexual photographer. That’s about as deep into his personal life as we go, but it’s an interesting moment that shows the evolution of the times.”
The actor noted the difference between the early-mid 1960s, the era of the show’s setting, and today’s world.
“Stan and Peggy probably wouldn’t have an issue with a gay copywriter,” he said. “But many other people in the office undoubtedly would have. There weren’t protections against discrimination the way there are now. It’s really important that we continue moving forward towards equal rights — not just marriage equality — and make sure that we don’t backslide under the auspices of religious freedom. No one should be allowed to discriminate.”
Williamson, 29, has seen a great deal of change during his own lifetime.
“The world has changed so much since I was a gay kid growing up in Jackson, Miss.,” he said. “I didn’t ever imagine that could get married, start a family. I even thought there was no way I could be a professional actor without being in the closet.”
Williamson recalled a difficult childhood growing up in a conservative religious home. But he was delighted to share his happy ending: His parents are now very supportive and get along great with his partner.
Of course we wondered who the lucky guy is.
“John is amazing,” Williamson said proudly. “He’s handsome, smart and the kindest person I know. We have literally been together since the moment we started talking.”
That was eight years ago. John Halbach, we’re told, is also an actor who sidelines by doing digital campaigns for Broadway shows.
In between wedding plans and his career, Williamson has quite a full plate. He’s about to direct his first film, and is now working on the second season of “Eastsiders,” his web series.
“‘Eastsiders’ is a dark comedy about a gay couple trying to stay together through infidelity in Silver Lake, Calif.,” Williamson said. “The reaction from viewers was incredible. The first season was picked up by Logo and we also put out a DVD through Wolfe Video. We were able to raise $150,000 to shoot a second season; the power of the Internet is incredible.”
Williamson serves as the star, writer and director of “Eastsiders.” He co-stars alongside his fiancé and with Van Hansis, who made a splash a decade ago by playing a gay character on the now-cancelled soap opera “As the World Turns.”
“We live in such an exciting time in history,” Williamson said. “I hope that LGBT people everywhere are energized to make their voices heard. We’ve made a lot of progress but this is not the time to be complacent.”
For more information on “Eastsiders,” visit www.eastsiderstheseries.com.