One actor is taking a major stand following Candace Cameron Bure's controversial comments about "traditional marriage." As E! News noted, Neal Bledsoe, who has starred in The Winter Palace and Christmas at the Drive-In on Great American Family, has left the network. He shared a statement with Variety in which he said that he made the decision in order to stand with the LGBTQ community.
Bledsoe began his statement by writing that he wants to do work that he can be "proud of." But, when it comes to the recent controversy surrounding GAC Family, he said he can no longer sit idly by. The actor wrote that the "thought that my work could be used to deliberately discriminate against anyone horrifies and infuriates me." As a result, he has decided to part ways with the network.
"I hope GAF will change, but until everyone can be represented in their films with pride, my choice is clear," Bledsoe wrote. "I look forward to working with creators who put no limits on the stories we tell and follow through on their message of values with open arms." Bledsoe continued to write that he decided to take action due to his relationships with those in the LGTBQ community, as he noted that his life "wouldn't be where it is today without the love, support, and guidance" from that very community. He added, "From my mentors in college, to the myriad of agents and managers, writers and directors, teachers and colleagues, and, of course, my dear friends and family, who have all touched my life, I owe them a great debt."
This whole matter started on Nov. 14 when the Wall Street Journal published an interview with Bure, who is also the chief creative officer of GAC Family. During the interview, she was asked whether the network would ever feature movies with same-sex characters as the leads, to which she replied, "I think that Great American Family will keep traditional marriage at the core." Her comments soon prompted others in Hollywood, including JoJo Siwa and Hilarie Burton, to speak out. Bure later issued a statement in which she commented on the backlash. However, she did not expressly contradict what she originally said.
"I have great love and affection for all people," she wrote. "It absolutely breaks my heart that anyone would ever think I intentionally would want to offend and hurt anyone." Bure continued to explain, "I had also expressed in my interview, which was not included, that people of all ethnicities and identities have and will continue to contribute to the network in great ways both in front of and behind the camera, which I encourage and fully support."