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Friday, September 29, 2023

"I knew I was gay when I watched ‘Back to the Future,'" said "Entourage" star Rex Lee Wednesday night. "The idea of Michael J. Fox in purple briefs turned me on, and I thought, ‘Oh! You are a homosexual!'"

Lee, an openly gay, Korean actor, spoke at the Curtis M. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts in front of about 400 people as he talked about his time playing Lloyd on the TV show "Entourage."

Accent Speakers Bureau and the Asian American Student Union hosted Lee.

Accent paid Lee $27,000 for his appearance.

The show started with the Asian Kaleidoscope Month's opening ceremony. Students walked on stage with flags of different Asian countries represented in the Asian American Student Union.

Anthony Nguyen, executive director of Kaleidoscope Month, introduced his directors and talked about the upcoming Mr. and Mrs. AASU pageant.

Master lecturer Mike Foley and Rex Lee walked on stage and sat in two leather chairs. Lee was wearing dark jeans and a flannel T-shirt. His hair was slicked back with gel. Foley first asked Lee about his career choice.

"Why aren't you a doctor?" Foley asked.

"My parents wanted me to be a doctor," Lee replied, "and hoped I would see the error of my ways."

The audience laughed as Foley asked Lee questions about what it was like working with "Ari Gold," actor Jeremy Piven's character, as well as his past love of playing the piano and how Lee was cast to the role as Lloyd.

"Why do we love Lloyd?" Foley asked.

"Because I'm lovable," Lee said. "It's flattering. Actually, when I was just starting off on the show, the crew didn't even know my name and called me Lloyd."

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The Q-and-A session turned somber when Lee talked about how he came out to his parents when he was 21, his experience auditioning for other acting roles until he got the part of Lloyd, and how he didn't realize his passion for acting until after he graduated in 1990 from Oberlin College in Ohio.

"[As a child] my parents were giving me the message I had to earn my love, when I was in school I have to get A's or they're going to think I'm a piece of shit," Lee said. "So I did well."

Sarah Rapp, a 20-year-old communication science and disorders junior, said Lloyd was one of her favorite actors on "Entourage."

"I really liked how open he was when he was talking about his personal life and co-workers on set," Rapp said.

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