What Is 'My Policeman,' Starring Harry Styles, Even About?

Everything you need to know about 'My Policeman.'

6/8/2021 6:30:00 PM

Everything you need to know about 'My Policeman.'

Production is underway, as evidenced by photos of him smooching costar Emma Corrin.

The Road to Coronation Street.Though, much on the internet has been made of rumors that Dawson and Styles will share two rather intimate sex scenes.David Dawson and Harry Styles on the set ofMy Policemanin Brighton, England, May 2021.Photo by Neil Mockford GC via Getty Images

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The younger trio’s scenes together are all flashbacksThe film begins in 1957, which is why Tom didn’t publicly disclose his sexuality: Homosexuality was then illegal in England. The trio then crosses paths again in the 1990s, with all the characters played by older actors. Linus Roache (of

Homeland) will play Styles’s older counterpart, and Gina McKee (ofAtonement) will play Corrin’s.Rupert Everett rounds out the castPatrick—by then an aging invalid—makes a comeback, too, played by Rupert Everett. Everett has been a trailblazer from the start, beginning with his role as a gay former public school student in 1930s England, in 1984’s headtopics.com

Another Country. Everett himself came out in a novel five years later, and has repeatedly opined whether coming out so early in his career may have hurt it.“Honestly, I would not advise any actor necessarily, if he was really thinking of his career, to come out,” he

said in 2009. “The fact is that you could not be, and still cannot be, a 25-year-old homosexual trying to make it in the British film business or the American film business or even the Italian film business. It just doesn't work and you're going to hit a brick wall at some point.” (Everett has also had relationships with women. “I was basically adventurous,” he once said of his heterosexual dalliances. “I think I wanted to try everything.”)

Obviously, the film deals with the real experience of the changing attitudes towards homosexualityKeep in mind,My Policemanstarts in the 1950s—at least a decade before the Sexual Offences Act was repealed, legalizing homosexuality in England and Wales in 1967. To put Tom’s reluctance to come out of the closet into context, look no further than the fact that Everett’s above quote claiming a gay person can’t make it in the film industry came more than four decades later.

Could Harry Style’s casting overshadow the film’s intent?If the novel is any indication, it’s possible thatMy Policemanwill be a nuanced success. Though with Everett the only openly gay actor amongst the core cast, there’s certainly been some discussion about its commitment to representation. Styles’s own relationship to sexuality has certainly been a cause for discussion over the years, though his public relationships have all been with women such as Taylor Swift and (reportedly) Olivia Wilde. None of that binary thinking, though, has made him state anything definitively. headtopics.com

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“Am I sprinkling in nuggets of sexual ambiguity to try and be more interesting? No,” Styles told theGuardianin 2019. “I want things to look a certain way. Not because it makes me look gay, or it makes me look straight, or it makes me look bisexual, but because I think it looks cool. And more than that, I dunno, I just think sexuality’s something that’s fun. Honestly? I can’t say I’ve given it any more thought than that.” (In case you somehow missed it, Styles most recently turned heads—and then some—for appearing in

Read more: W magazine »

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