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Nick Offerman Calls Out ‘Homophobic Hate’ in Awards Acceptance Speech

Reuters/Mario Anzuoni
Reuters/Mario Anzuoni

Nick Offerman used his time on stage at the Independent Spirit Awards to slam the slew of hateful comments his character received for being gay in an episode of The Last of Us, thanking HBO for “having the guts” to tell the story despite backlash from homophobes.

Offerman didn’t mince his words in the speech, which came after he was awarded best supporting performance in a new scripted series for his role in the hit show.

“Thanks to HBO for having the guts to participate in this storytelling tradition that is truly independent,” he said. “Stories with guts, that when homophobic hate comes my way and says, ‘Why did you have to make it a gay story?’ We say, ‘Because you ask questions like that.’ It’s not a gay story. It’s a love story, you asshole.”

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The crowd at Sunday’s Spirit Awards, which took place in a tent on the beach in Santa Monica, erupted in applause. Before he headed off stage, he finished his remarks on a humorous note, thanking his team and wife, Megan Mullally, whom he called, “my bride and my puzzle coach and legal property.”

Offerman performed opposite Murray Bartlett in the episode “Long, Long Time,” which was a breakaway episode in The Last of Us that told a love story that spanned two decades between two men as the world descended into chaos around them.

Spirit Awards’ Broadcast Derailed by Chants From Pro-Ceasefire Protesters

That chaos, of course, is a zombie apocalypse that’s at the center of the series. Offerman and Bartlett were praised for their standout performances, but also fell victim to hateful comments. Offerman made his position clear Sunday, saying he has no time for those who view a love story differently based on sexuality.

The Last of Us is currently in production for a second season, with stars like Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey already at filming in Vancouver. Pascal told reporters Saturday night that filming has been “going amazing” thus far.

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