Styles stokes debate about sexuality with premiere of “My Policeman” in

British actor and singer Harry Styles attends the premiere of ‘My Policeman’ at the Toronto International Film Festival – Copyright WanNaiks Gallery/AFP Handout


Discussing the complexities of sexuality, pop superstar Harry Styles said he found the withdrawn gay man he plays in 1950s drama My Policeman depressing when his latest film premiered at the Toronto Film Festival on Sunday .

My Policeman is one of several LGBTQ-themed films in what organizers have been hailing as a “breakthrough” year at North America’s largest film festival, along with Billy Eichner’s rom-com “Bros” and critically acclaimed gay military drama The Inspection. ”

But the world premiere of Style’s latest film comes as the British actor and singer faces accusations from some high-profile critics of ‘appropriated’ queer culture, including his gender-biased fashion choices while keeping his own sexuality ambiguous.

In the film, he plays Tom, a police officer who fell into a forbidden love triangle with a young woman and a curator at an urban art gallery in Britain in the 1950s, when homosexuality was illegal.

“I think they have so much nuance and so much complexity that comes up for people in real life in terms of sexuality and self-discovery,” Styles said at a Toronto news conference.

The film, which also stars Emma Corrin and Rupert Everett, jumps between 1957 and 1999 and sees the trio at two different stages in their lives, when Britain’s attitudes and laws towards homosexuality had radically changed.

It’s about the consequences for all three of Tom being forced to hide his love for curator Patrick.

“I think Tom’s version of acceptance is pretty depressing — I think he accepts that he’s going to deny that part of himself for a really long time,” Styles said.

He remarked, “For me, the reason the story is so devastating is that it’s ultimately a waste of time for me.

“I think wasted time is the most devastating thing because…