T.R. Knight Confirms Slur Was Made, Resulted in His Coming Out

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T.R. Knight Confirms Slur Was Made, Resulted in His Coming Out
T.R. Knight says that hearing Isaiah Washington call him a "faggot" on the set of Grey's Anatomy gave him the courage to come out of the closet - and that he's speechless that Washington on Monday denied using the word.

In an interview with Ellen DeGeneres, which aired on her talk show today, Knight says something changed inside him when he overheard an argument in October between Washington and Grey's Anatomy co-star Patrick Dempsey during which Washington used the slur.

"It's an awesome word, isn't it?" the actor told DeGeneres sarcastically. "I've never been called that to my face. So I think when that happened, something shifted, and it became bigger than myself."

Shortly after the on-set dustup, Knight confirmed he is gay - the kind of public announcement he says isn't his style, but he felt was necessary.

"I was under no delusions," he said. "My friends on the set knew. We talked about it. Publicly, it's not my thing to call up People magazine and be like, 'Hey, you want to know something about me?' I could've just let it slide and not said anything, but it became important. It became important to make the statement."

In the Golden Globe Awards press room on Monday night, after Grey's Anatomy won Best TV Drama, Washington dubiously fielded a question from a reporter about the incident and denied using the slur, which rekindled interest in what could have remained a dead issue.

"No, I did not call T.R. a faggot," he said. "Never happened, never happened."

But Knight told another story to Ellen DeGeneres.

The talk show host said, "And then the other night at the Golden Globes, I guess Isaiah Washington is starting up the whole thing up again which is kind of crazy..."

"Yeah, he denied that he said it (faggot)," Knight said, "and I don't know what to say about it. But it's pretty bad."

Washington's denial also infuriated Grey's Anatomy cast member Katherine Heigl, who reproached her co-star during an interview Monday.

"I'm going to be really honest right now, he needs to just not speak in public. Period," she said. "I'm sorry, that did not need to be said, I'm not okay with it."

In today's interview, T.R. Knight also thanked DeGeneres for her courage in coming out as a lesbian 10 years ago.

"It just made all the difference in the world," he said.

T.R. Knight and Ellen DeGeneres

Steve Marsi is the Managing Editor of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Google+ or email him here.


I think it is funny when heterosexuals post comments about fudgepacking and how men are supposed to be with women to reproduce. I have a lot of straight friends(male and female). ALL of my straight guy friends always tell me how they try to get their girls to let them have anal sex. And most of my girl friends love it .Homosexuals aren't the only ones who enjoy anal sex so all these republicans need to stop being hypocrites. We dont all believe in the bible so you might as well save that argument for bible study or sunday school. We dont all want to buy into that ignorant bigotry or the overwhelming arrogance. People who use the word faggot are no better than the people who use the word nigger. You might as well all be considered nazis in the kkk.
As far as Isiah Wash. is concerned, he got exactly what he deserved. He said the word faggot in front of a gay man and got canned. Had the gay man said the word nigger in front of the black man he would have been fired on the spot- even if he had apologized or back peddled. I keep reading all of these posts about how the white man just wanted to get rid of the black man because he's racist. What a bunch of bull shit. THE BLACK man was the prejudice bigot so he got fired. END of story. HE GOT WHAT HE DESERVED and IM GLAD.


It is hard to respond to the last two posters. It is never all right to use derrogatory terms directed at anyone else for the purpose of being hurtful. I don't like the use of derrogatory terms at all. But I have to admit I have been called some from time to time and you know what it really didn't hurt me. People have to be strong enough in who they are and proud of what they are so that someone else's slur doesn't impact them. I don't think anyone is saying that calling someone a slur is okay. To me there is a difference in each man's interpretation of what happened. Headlines like the one on this website that says "TR CONFIRMS GAY SLUR" is making an assumption that TR's version of the altercation is the correct one. Confirms is a loaded word. It implies that he is telling the truth. In fact, TR overheard something. He believes Isaiah referred to him as the f-word. Even he did not say Isaiah called him the f-word. I am disaapointed in TR for not just confronting Isaiah about it at least to be sure that he heard correctly before making his public statements. I am also disappointed that the head lines don't say TR has a different version of what happened rather thatn TR confirms slur. Too many hurtful assumptions are being made.


For those idiots who don't think it's not a big deal or offensive to use words like "Faggot" or "Nigger", then for them it shouldn't be a big deal to just call each other words like "Bitches", "Fuckers", "Whores" or "Assholes", cause according to them, that's the truth, it's what everyone is (and their mothers), right?


Oh and by the way the only reason that ellen has a show is to push the gay agenda.


IW said what he meant and should not of apologized. If IW had any back bone he would refuse to have counseling to appease the rest of the overwelming majority of hollywood fags. tr knight is a fag. It's a joke that he had to go to counseling for calling him what he is. How did so many people in the entertainment business and media become gay sypathizers. Lets not glorify a disgusting lifestyle that involves packing fecal matter. Men and women are meant to reproduce together. last time I checked you can't get a child from fudgepacking. Silly FAGGOT dicks are for chicks!!


I love how many people are referring to what IW said as a mistake I find that funny. He meant what he said people don't accidently drop the N bomb. He didn't accidently drop the F bomb. People don't make mistakes like that. It's a train of thought: a way of thinking. He may regret saying it out loud but I doubt that he regrets thinking it and honestly his wasy of thinking is what should change. That being said no amount of rehab is going to help him unless he wants to change his whole pattern of thinking and behaving. I hope that he does want to change...to move to tolerance...to move to acceptance.


Don't quit and don't run. Hold your ground and stay with the show. The show is not about your personal life. I enjoy the show with YOU in it. There is always someone who is not happy with something so if they have a problem you can not run from their problem they (problems and people) are everywhere. You are not flaunting anything or trying to change anyone's life style. You are doing your job. Don't be pushed from here to there to please anyone.


So Sad... I think that TR is so cute and Would love to let him know that. The show would NOT be the same with out him and I sure hope That he stays with it. The world is a bad place when people are always looking at what we do and how we do it. Just remember that the Lord is the only one who can judge us.


As I read all the comments, I have noticed the level of ignorance and uneducated people that actually have the nerve to speak of their opinion as if it is a fact. For those who commented by saying that the "F" is of no importance, how would you like to be called a name that you know it minimizes you as human being, no one does so stop being so hypocrite about it. I'll bet that you are the first ones to complaint about the problems of the world. It takes more energy and effort to be mean to one another than to be kind and respectful. You know for a fact that if the "N" word is use in any situation, there would be such turmoil. Have we forgotten the incident with Richard from the character of "Kramer", he use the "N" word and you so what happened. Is it so hard to say the word GAY or is it your own insecurities that make you angry. Those who cannot be themselves attack those who are. This is not rocket science to figure this out and because of people such as some on this site, saying the "F" is not a big deal or that he deserves it (this last one is the icing on the cake) is observe and immoral. The main point here is that morals and values have been forgotten and place with anger, jealousy, and hatred. A very good example is demonstrated on this site.


Oh please TR get over it. Grow up people. Many of us have been called worse on the play ground in grade school. Now the only reason I might now want to watch the show now is because you won't be believable with as a heterosexual!


Grey's Anatomy Quotes

Did you say it? 'I love you. I don't ever want to live without you. You changed my life.' Did you say it? Make a plan. Set a goal. Work toward it, but every now and then, look around; Drink it in 'cause this is it. It might all be gone tomorrow."

Meredith (closing voiceover)

There's a reason I said I'd be happy alone. It wasn't 'cause I thought I'd be happy alone. It was because I thought if I loved someone and then it fell apart, I might not make it. It's easier to be alone, because what if you learn that you need love and you don't have it? What if you like it and lean on it? What if you shape your life around it and then it falls apart? Can you even survive that kind of pain? Losing love is like organ damage. It's like dying. The only difference is death ends. This? It could go on forever.