Portia de Rossi on love and her marriage of convenience project that no one would touch

Portia de Rossi graces the cover of Out magazine this month, but strangely, she is only going to be on half of the issue’s covers. She’s sharing this month’s cover girl dutiies with Ryan Murphy, because, unless you’re Nicki Minaj or Kylie Minogue (read: diva), a woman will never be able to have it on her own.

Nonetheless, we still enjoyed finding out more about Portia, who is not heard from quite as much as her talk show wife, Ellen DeGeneres. Here’s what we learned from the interview.

On the return of Arrested Development:

It was a bit of a fantasy. Because it’s on Netflix, we didn’t really feel the presence of a studio or a network. It felt like an independent feature, very creative and loose. We could trust the process because we know our characters and we know [creator] Mitch [Hurwitz]. But at the same time, everything was very spontaneous. Some of the funniest stuff I have ever seen in my whole life is in this new season. In this reincarnation, [Lindsay]’s doing a little work on herself. She is attempting to… not become a better person exactly, but to find out who she is and what she wants. She isn’t as vapid and selfish as I’ve always thought her to be.”

On if her on-screen husband Tobias is secretly gay:

I remember David Cross asking Mitch, “Am I gay? Or is this just like this running joke?” I can’t imagine that he would ever think of himself as anything but this guy who is in an unfortunate marriage to a woman that doesn’t really love him. I don’t think that Tobias would ever think of himself as gay, and that’s what makes it funny. It is a huge credit to the writing and to David [that it’s not offensive].

On her career:

I’ve been very specific with my career. I really love acting, but it’s important to me to be part of really interesting projects. Whatever I respond to, I really throw myself at. I like working with really smart people, and I like being on shows that are either challenging or say something about the culture that we all should be talking about or thinking about. Sometimes female voices are a little louder and sometimes they’re not. But I think the general trend of network television is just money and how to make money. Until things actually change, the conversation sounds the same.

On a project I most definitely would watch:

I had a project that I was shopping around for TV called Butch and Fay, about two gay people, very famous actors who marry each other for the sake of their career. That happened a lot in the past and probably still exists today. Every single person that I brought it to was kind of titillated by the idea but ultimately shut it down, saying that being gay in the industry just wasn’t an issue anymore. I know it’s not very popular to bring this issue up, but it’s still very difficult for actors to get certain types of roles. We need to hear it some more until things change.

On being gay and happily married:

I really, honestly think that anybody who is openly gay and visible is powerful. It doesn’t matter what you do, you are impacting people. We’ve settled into happily married life. We really support each other in whatever we’re doing and we’re incredibly happy, which is why you don’t see us in the press so much. There’s no drama to report. There comes some pressure in your mid-30s, and you think, Am I going to have kids so I don’t miss out on something that other people really seem to love? Or is it that I really genuinely want to do this with my whole heart? I didn’t feel that my response was “yes” to the latter. You have to really want to have kids, and neither of us did. So it’s just going to be me and Ellen and no babies — but we’re the best of friends and married life is blissful, it really is. I’ve never been happier than I am right now.

The May issue of Out is available on stands this month.