Can a press interview gone bad kill a television show?
On June 9, Noah Galvin, the openly gay star of ABC's The Real O'Neals — a coming-of-age sitcom about a gay Chicago teen and his conservative family — gave a brutally frank interview to New York magazine's Vulture blog about Hollywood's "glass closet." In it, Galvin, 22, described another gay actor, Colton Haynes, as "the worst" and Haynes' recent coming out as "f—ing pussy bullshit"; called Eric Stonestreet's Emmy-winning performance as a gay dad on Modern Family "a caricature of a caricature"; and, most controversially, targeted Bryan Singer with a comment about underaged boys that later was stricken from the story after the X-Men director's lawyers intervened.
Sources with knowledge of the events say ABC was blindsided by the interview, which was set up by Galvin's personal publicist, Maria Candida, as part of an Emmy push for the young star. (She declined comment.) Galvin quickly apologized for his "brazen and hurtful comments" on Twitter, but how all of this bad press affects the low-rated bubble series — which, after an "abusive" waiting period (Galvin's word), was renewed by the network May 12 — remains to be seen. As the controversy raged, the specter of a reduced episode order arose at ABC, according to one source. An executive producer who had spent four years getting the series on the air was "begging the network not to take action," says this source. (Reps for ABC declined comment on the situation.)
And this was not the first such incident involving the actor's behavior. Insiders say Galvin — a New York native who had only a couple of small acting credits before landing the starring role on Real O'Neals, which is based on sex columnist Dan Savage's childhood — has been warned multiple times about matters of "ego and entitlement." One show source says the set likely will be awkward when the cast returns to film season two later this summer: "He caused a grade-A shit show. ABC screamed at him all afternoon."
This story first appeared in the June 24 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.
Check out more from Noah in the gallery below.
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 17: Noah Galvin attends 2016 ABC Upfront at David Geffen Hall on May 17, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Laura Cavanaugh/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 03: Noah Galvin attends a baseball game between the Atlanta Braves and the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on June 3, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Noel Vasquez/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 16: Noah Galvin attends the 2016 Entertainment Weekly & People New York Upfront at Cedar Lake on May 16, 2016 in New York, New York. (Photo by Mike Pont/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 14: Noah Galvin attends the 27th Annual GLAAD Media Awards held at The Waldorf=Astoria on May 14, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Brent N. Clarke/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 14: Actor Andrew Rannells (L) and Noah Galvin speak onstage at the 27th Annual GLAAD Media Awards in New York on May 14, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for GLAAD)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 12: Noah Galvin appears to discuss 'The O'Neals' during the AOL BUILD Speaker Seriesat AOL Studios In New York on May 12, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Donna Ward/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 12: Noah Galvin attends AOL Build Speaker Series to discuss 'The Real O'Neals' at AOL Studios In New York on May 12, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Laura Cavanaugh/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 08: Noah Galvin and Tessa Albertson attend the Broadway Opening Night Performance of 'Disaster!' at Nederlander Theatre on March 8, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Walter McBride/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 03: Actor Noah Galvin attends the 'How To Be Single' New York premiere at NYU Skirball Center on February 3, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Jim Spellman/WireImage)
Noah Galvin of ABC Network's 'The Real O'Neals' poses in the Getty Images Portrait Studio at the 2016 Winter Television Critics Association press tour at the Langham Hotel on January 9, 2016 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Maarten de Boer/Getty Images Portraits)
TCA WINTER PRESS TOUR 2016 - The cast and executive producers of ABC series graced the carpet at Disney | ABC Television Group's Winter Press Tour 2016. (Image Group LA/ABC via Getty Images)
JAY R. FERGUSON, PAUL LEE (PRESIDENT, ABC ENTERTAINMENT GROUP), MARTHA PLIMPTON, BEBE WOOD, MATT SHIVELY, NOAH GALVIN, MARY HOLLIS INBODEN
PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 09: Actor Noah Galvin speaks onstage during ABC's The Real O'Neals panel as part of the ABC Networks portion of the 2016 Television Critics Association Winter Tour at Langham Hotel on January 9, 2016 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
THE REAL O'NEALS - 'The Real Prom' - As the school prom approaches, Kenny tries to think of who the best guy would be to ask as his date. With time running out, Kenny and Jimmy try to come up with the perfect 'prom-posal' for the classmates they each have set their sights on. Shannon thinks the idea behind prom is a scam and would rather stay at home, but once Pat discovers she was asked to attend, he tries to convince her to go. Meanwhile, Eileen tries to keep VP Murray's romantic attention at bay but struggles to resist, on the season finale of 'The Real O'Neals,' TUESDAY, MAY 24 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EDT) on the ABC Television Network. (Ron Batzdorff/ABC via Getty Images)
MATT SHIVELY, MARTHA PLIMPTON, NOAH GALVIN
THE REAL O'NEALS - ABC's 'The Real O'Neals' stars Noah Galvin as Kenny. (Bob D'Amico/ABC via Getty Images)
THE REAL O'NEALS - 'The Real Rules' - After realizing Pat left his police badge at home, Jimmy convinces Kenny and Shannon that he should use Pat's badge to pretend he's a police officer so they can receive free perks around town. Meanwhile, when Pat tells Eileen about an upcoming date he's going on, she takes matters into her own hands when it comes to a potential suitor in her dating life, on 'The Real O'Neals,' TUESDAY, MAY 17 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EDT), on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Vivian Zink/ABC via Getty Images)
BEBE WOOD, MATT SHIVELY, NOAH GALVIN, JAY R. FERGUSON
THE REAL O'NEALS - 'The Real Man' - When Pat plans a camping trip to enjoy some father-and-son bonding time with Jimmy, Kenny also joins them to prove that even though he's gay he can still be manly. During the camping trip, Pat continuously pressures Jimmy about his upcoming wrestling match, which leads to a surprising result. Meanwhile, after Eileen discovers Shannon has been skipping her classes and refuses confirmation, she invites Father Phil over to help answer Shannon's challenging questions she has about Catholicism, on 'The Real O'Neals,' TUESDAY, MARCH 29 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EDT) on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Nicole Wilder/ABC via Getty Images)
NOAH GALVIN, MATT SHIVELY
THE REAL O'NEALS - 'The Real Retreat' - When Jimmy is unexpectedly named Faith Leader for the weekend at the Catholic Youth Retreat, a jealous Kenny decides to take on his older brother's role as ring leader of the bad kids. Home alone without the kids, Pat invites a new lady friend over, and Eileen can't help but enlist Jodi to spy on them, with surprising results, on 'The Real O'Neals,' TUESDAY, MAY 3 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EDT), on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Kevin Estrada/ABC via Getty Images)
THE REAL O'NEALS - 'The Real Book Club' - Eileen faces her book club for the first time after her family's 'outing,' but things take a surprising turn when instead of shunning her the ladies begin opening up - way too much - about their own problems. Kenny's first trip to the 'gayborhood' coffee shop is everything he'd hoped for, until Pat tags along with him to a gay dodge ball match, on 'The Real O'Neals,' TUESDAY, APRIL 19 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EDT), on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Vivian Zink/ABC via via Getty Images)
NOAH GALVIN, JEREMY BATISTE
THE REAL O'NEALS - 'The Real Wedding' - When Kenny decides to audition for the school play, 'Zombie Romeo and Juliet,' Eileen volunteers to help out. Kenny receives the role of Romeo, but much to his dismay, his ex-girlfriend Mimi is playing Juliet. Things get more awkward when Eileen, realizing that this may be the only time she will see Kenny marry a girl, begins to treat the play's wedding scene like an actual wedding. Meanwhile, Pat and Jimmy both struggle to talk to their new crushes, on 'The Real O'Neals,' TUESDAY, APRIL 26 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EDT), on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Tony Rivetti/ABC via via Getty Images)
THE REAL O'NEALS - 'The Real Grandma' - When Eileen's strict, Catholic-abiding mother, Grandma Agnes, arrives unannounced at the O'Neals' home, Eileen has her family cover up both her and Pat's divorce and Kenny's sexuality. Although Eileen wants to keep these secrets hidden so that she can finally win her mother's approval, Kenny tries to convince his mother to 'come out' to Grandma Agnes, leading to some surprising twists, on 'The Real O'Neals,' TUESDAY, APRIL 5 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EDT) on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Greg Gayne/ABC via via Getty Images)NOAH GALVIN, MARTHA PLIMPTON
THE REAL O'NEALS - 'The Real F Word' - It's Kenny's first day back at school since coming out, and he uses a certain 'F word' to describe himself, which then backfires. Meanwhile, Eileen helps Pat choose a couch for his new living space in the basement but she ultimately struggles with accepting this new phase in their relationship, on 'The Real O'Neals,' TUESDAY, MARCH 15 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EDT) on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Nicole Wilder/ABC via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 17: Noah E. Galvin attends 'What I Did Last Summer' opening night party at Signature Theatre Company's The Pershing Square Signature Center on May 17, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by John Lamparski/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 26: Actor Noah Galvin attends the 'Yosemite' opening night after party at Dublin 6 on January 26, 2012 in New York City. (Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images)