The Controversial Reason This ‘Yellowstone’ Star Quit His ‘True Blood’ Role

What happened to this 'True Blood' cast member before 'Yellowstone?

Since the year 2018, Yellowstone fans have seen Luke Grimes bring Yellowstone’s Kayce Dutton to life in the popular drama series. Even though Grimes isn’t the wealthiest Yellowstone star, it is clear that starring in the show has been financially rewarding for him and it has advanced his career. After all, most actors would do just about anything to star in a much-talked-about show since that often leads to landing other notable roles.

Years before Luke Grimes landed his Yellowstone role, the actor joined the cast of another series that had a devoted fan following, True Blood. However, after only appearing in a handful of episodes, Grimes’ True Blood tenure came to a sudden end and another actor took over his role. As it turns out, even though there are many shocking facts about True Blood, it could be argued that the story behind Grimes’ exit may be the most surprising of all. After all, it has become reported that Grimes’ reason for quitting True Blood is quite controversial.

Buzzfeed Reports That Luke Grimes Quit True Blood Because He Refused To Play A Gay Character

During True Blood’s sixth season, Luke Grimes joined the show’s cast as James, as a vampire that Deborah Ann Woll’s Jessica got involved with. Throughout that season, Grimes brought the character to life in six episodes and from all accounts, he was set to be a memorable part of the show’s seventh and final season. Then, in December of 2013, it was announced that Grimes was leaving True Blood with HBO explaining that his departure was due to “the creative direction of the character”.

Given the fact that lots of actors have quit hit shows, it wasn’t that unusual that Grimes left True Blood the way he did. Still, considering that starring in True Blood was a really big deal for Luke Grimes’ career, a lot of the show’s fans were left wondering what creative decision could be so bad that it made the actor quit. Once True Blood’s seventh season premiered and it became clear that the character that Grimes used to play began a gay relationship with Nelsan Ellis’ Lafayette, a lot of fans drew conclusions. Then, in 2014, Buzzfeed reported that a source close to True Blood’s production confirmed that Grimes was unwilling to play a gay character.

“According to the source, Grimes objected to the first few scripts he received, once it became clear that his character would become romantically involved with Lafayette. He countered that he would be willing to play the role if Lafayette were attracted to him, but not if the attraction was mutual. He also did not want to do any same-sex kissing or sex scenes. The writers were unwilling to change the scripts on his behalf.”

Of course, everyone deserves to be comfortable in the workplace. However, considering that Luke Grimes is an actor and people in that profession are constantly scripted to kiss their co-stars, a lot of people found Grimes’ reported position ridiculous. According to what Grime’s publicist told Buzzfeed in an email response to their report, however, Luke left True Blood purely for scheduling reasons. “Luke always had an out clause as a means of pursuing other opportunities which arose in the form of features beginning with The Shangri-La Suite, followed by Fifty Shades of Grey, and most recently, Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper with Bradley Cooper.” On top of that, Grimes himself has said his True Blood departure “had nothing to do with storylines”.

Luke Grimes’ Former True Blood Co-Star Believes He Left Due To Gay Storyline

Of course, the only people who can know for sure whether or not Luke Grimes quit True Blood due to gay storylines are those who were directly involved with the discussions. That said, the actor that Grimes would have co-starred in romantic scenes with if he didn’t quit True Blood has made it clear he believes Luke left because he didn’t want to play a gay character.

During the seventh season of True Blood, the character Luke Grimes once played became romantically involved with Nelsan Ellis’ Lafayette. For that reason, when he was interviewed by Vulture in late-2014, he was asked about the Grimes controversy and Ellis’ position on what happened was very clear. “I mean, I can say I’m not going to make a comment, but I just think that, you’re an actor, you’re an actor on a show that’s True Blood, we’re all sitting there going, “You quit your job because … really?” I’m just… I’m over him. You quit your job because you don’t want to play a gay part? As if it’s … You know what? I’m going to stop talking.”

Despite saying he was going to stop talking, Nelsan Ellis was so passionate about the situation that he continued to address the situation. “You have to be open. But more importantly, you make a statement when you do something like that. I did a documentary called Damn Wonderful, about gay suicide, and you make a statement, a big statement, when you go, ‘I don’t want to play this part because it’s gay.’ If you have a child, if you have a son, and he comes out as gay, what are you going to do? If you have a daughter who comes out gay …? You just made a statement, and it has ripple effects.

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