Billy Porter Honored With A Star on The Hollywood Walk of Fame
The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce’s Walk of Fame Selection Committee recently announced that Tony Award winner Billy Porter and 34 other entertainers will receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Porter, who stars as Pray Tell in Ryan Murphy’s FX series “Pose,” will be honored for his work on Broadway along with comedian Dave Chappelle. “This year’s choices were particularly unique,” selection committee chair and Walk of Famer Vin Di Bona said in a statement. “We were able to recognize the talents of 35 artists who have already built a legacy here in Hollywood. Also, we were able to celebrate many new talented artists who’ve touched our hearts in film, television, radio, and a variety of musical categories.”
“I’m in #hollywood for good now b—!” Porter wrote on Twitter following the announcement. He thanked the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce and called the star “an honor.” The stage veteran has worked on several Broadway shows, including his Tony-winning turn as Lola in Kinky Boots and in Shuffle Along, Smokey Joe’s Cafe, Grease, Five Guys Named Moe, and Miss Saigon. According to Broadway.com, Porter’s off-Broadway credits include Angels in America, Birdie Blue, Chef’s Theater: A Musical Feast, Radiant Baby, Songs for a New World, and The Merchant of Venice.
The 49-year-old Pittsburgh native wrote While I Yet Live, which played off-Broadway in 2014, and Untitled Sex Project, set to debut off-Broadway in October. Porter will also direct Dan McCabe’s premiere play The Purists at Boston’s Huntington Theatre Company in summer 2019, according to Broadway.com.
Porter, who has nabbed headlines this year for his various ensembles at awards ceremonies, showed up to the 2019 Tonys wearing a red velvet and pink tulle show-stopper complete with an embroidered uterus motif in support of women’s reproductive rights.
The custom Celestino Couture gender-fluid evening suit included a long train and 30,000 Swarovski crystals. It was created from an upcycled curtain backdrop from the musical Kinky Boots, TIME reported.
“I’m an advocate for all who are disenfranchised,” Porter told The Hollywood Reporter. “None of us are free until we’re all free! I really want to make sure that I’m showing up for all the disenfranchised people I can so that we can find power in our unity. This government is trying to take away the woman’s right to choose and that’s unacceptable. No!”Thirty-four other entertainers will be honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The motion picture honorees include: Mahershala Ali, Batman, Ruth E. Carter, Laurence Fishburne, Chris Hemsworth, Spike Lee, Julia Roberts, Octavia Spencer, and Lina Wertmüller.Christina Applegate, Andy Cohen, Cindy Crawford, Terry Crews, Harry Friedman, Kathie Lee Gifford, Nigel Lythgoe, Milo Ventimiglia, Burt Ward, Wendy Williams, and Dr. Phil McGraw will be honored for their contributions to television.
Artists Elvis Costello, Sir Lucian Grainge, Billy Idol, Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Alicia Keys, Andy Madadian, Mo Ostin, Bobby Rydell, Alejandro Sanz, and Tanya Tucker are the honorees for recording. Meanwhile, Susan Stamberg is the sole honoree for radio. The Hollywood Walk of Fame will also posthumously honor Muddy Waters and Andy Kaufman. The Hollywood Walk of Fame said that dates have not been set for the star ceremonies. Honorees have two years from the date of selection to schedule their star ceremonies. Hollywood, and in turn the Hollywood Walk of Fame, is increasingly becoming more diverse. A 2011 report by CNN found that of the 2,354 stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at the time, only 5.1 percent belong to African Americans, 3.4 percent to Hispanics, and just 0.4 percent for Asians.
A February 2019 study from UCLA found that women and people of color have made gains in Hollywood both in front of and behind the camera, NPR reported. However, numbers still do not reflect the US population. Gains have also been made in the LGBTQ community. Janet Mock, who works with Porter on “Pose,” became the first Black transgender woman to sign a landmark overall deal with a major studio on June 19. Mock, who directs, produces, and writes for “Pose,” signed a three-year, multimillion-dollar deal with Netflix.
About the Author
Nicole Rojas is a breaking news writer for The North Star. She has published in various venues, including Newsweek, GlobalPost, IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly, and the Long Island Post. Nicole graduated from Boston University in 2012 with a degree in print journalism. She is an avid world traveler who recently explored Asia and Australia.