Billy Dee Williams has lived an incredibly fascinating life, and at 82 years old he's still surprising fans. The "Star Wars" actor recently sat down with for an interview with Esquire and revealed he identifies himself as gender fluid.
According to Esquire, Williams explained:
"I never tried to be anything except myself. I think of myself as a relatively colorful character who doesn’t take himself or herself too seriously.”
He added that "And you see I say ‘himself’ and ‘herself,’ because I also see myself as feminine as well as masculine. I’m a very soft person. I’m not afraid to show that side of myself."
Williams' interview comes ahead of his reprisal of Lando Calrissian in "Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker." Interestingly enough, Lando's sexuality was heavily discussed when actor Donald Glover took over the role for the 2018 movie, "Solo: A Star Wars Story."
After one of the "Solo" co-writers claimed Lando was "pansexual," Glover spoke about his interpretation of the character during an interview on SiriusXM radio.
"How can you not be pansexual in space? There’s so many things to have sex with. I didn’t think that was that weird. He’s coming on to everybody. It just didn’t seem that weird to me because I feel like if you’re in space, it’s kind of like the door’s open ... this thing is literally a blob. Like, ‘Are you a man or a woman?’ Who cares?”
When the Esquire reporter informed Williams about Glover's remarks on Lando's fluid sexuality, he apparently "lit" up and remarked, " “Really? That kid is brilliant—just look at those videos,” referencing his famous "This Is America" music video.
For himself, Billy Dee Williams has a history of rocky relationships, having been married three times. His first was to Audrey Sellers in 1959, they had one son but later got divorced, and the star claims it drove him into a deep depression. In 1968 he married model and actress Marlene Clark in a ceremony in Hawaii, however that marriage only lasted a couple of years.
In 1972 Williams married Teruko Nakagami and they had one daughter, Hanako. Williams filed for divorce in 1993 but apparently reconciled years later and there is no record of the divorce being finalized.
Fans Support Him
After Williams' revelation made the rounds, fans took to Twitter to praise the star for being his true self.
"We all deserve to be our true selves. And also was why Donald Glover was perfect as young Lando because it looks like he did his best to honor you," one fan wrote.
"As a Black woman who remembers@realbdwfrom way back in the day, I say there will never be another #BillyDeeWilliams. I’m not surprised by his embrace of his feminine side...All the great men recognize and acknowledge some aspect about themselves that is not strictly masculine!" another fan commented.
One lady refused to accept he has a feminine side and argues that Billy Dee Williams is all man!
"This is NOT the same man that ‘checked me out’ when I was shopping Nob Hill in San Francisco in 1985 (c/b ‘86) and gave me that gorgeous smile of his! There was certainly NOTHING feminine about the way he looked at me on that day!"
We disagree, that sounds exactly like the Billy Dee we know and love.