Harry Hamlin is looking back at the role that possibly “ended” his film career.
“I was told by a lot of people, you can’t do [‘Making Love’],” the actor told People in an interview. “I think it had been offered to pretty much everybody in town and everyone had turned it down because they thought it might be damaging to their careers.”
The 70-year-old actor played a gay writer in the 1982 film “Making Love”, a movie he believed was “ahead of its time.”
“I was looking for something serious and something meaningful, rather than doing a movie about vampire bats invading a small town in in the Midwest, which is the type of fare I was being offered at the time,” he recalled.
Despite his friends advising him to pass up the role, Hamlin’s agent encouraged him to go for it. The actor had just had a son with actress Ursula Andress, which he said led his agent to believe there could be no doubt about his sexuality.
Nonetheless, after the film came out, studios stopped calling.
“For years, I’d think was that the reason why I stopped getting calls? And finally realized that was the last time I ever did a movie for a studio,” said Hamlin. “I’ve done independent films but never a studio film. I had been doing nothing but studio films and basically going out on all the castings for all the movies. That stopped completely.”
While the film’s negative reception may have hindered Hamlin’s film career, he’s found success in the world of television.
“Regardless of the effect it had on my film career, I went on to have a great career — and I still do. I’m very proud of having done that movie,” he shared. The star has since gone on to act in “L.A. Law”, “Mad Men” and a number of other series. He continued, “I’m interested in working as an actor. I happen to think that TV is where its at right now. As long as the part is good, I’ll do it.”
Looking back on his career, Hamlin is still proud of his part in the film “Making Love”, especially the impact it had on people in the LGBTQ+ community.
“People come up and thank me for making the film and say they were affected by it and that it helped them come out or it helped them talk to their parents about their sexuality,” he added. “Very rarely does one have an opportunity to have that kind of effect out there in the zeitgeist.”