Katherine Heigl, Melora Hardin talk playing gay at TrevorLive

Last night I hit the TrevorLIVE red carpet to talk playing gay with Katherine Heigl (Jenny’s Wedding) and Melora Hardin (Transparent). The evening of song, speech, and glitter celebrated The Trevor Project’s sweet 16 and featured performances by Katharine McPhee, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Alex Newell, Melora Hardin, Marc Shaiman, Darren Criss, Mia Pfirrman, Ty Herndon and Anita Cochran. Hosted by gay icon/OG manic pixie dream girl Jennifer Coolidge, the star-studded turnout for an organization devoted to preventing suicide among LGBTQ youth resonated just how mainstream and widely accepted our cause and community have become over the last few years.

When I arrived at the Hollywood Palladium last night the fans were already swarming TrevorLIVE’s red carpet to catch a selfie with their favorite stars. AfterEllen scored a prime spot on the red carpet between two delightful journo babes who joined me in shameless gossip, celeb wrangling, and a two hour game of, “I’d go straight/gay for her/him.” When you’re packed together like a linear military formation, it’s all about the company… and who your company can lure over for questions.

First to saunter my way is Melora Hardin, who currently plays Tammy the lesbian on Transparent. Tammy is a tall, blonde, androgynous glass of homo who rekindles a steamy romance with Sarah: daughter, wife, mother, and former LUG. If you haven’t seen Transparent, you might recognize Melora as Jan from The Office. Like Jan, Tammy is a protagonist’s love interest who seems to be too good to be true… Because she is.

Melora strolls the carpet calmly in a black velvet pantsuit and sparkling diamond accessories, blonde hair still cropped short in Tammy’s lesbian chic pixie.

TrevorLIVE Los Angeles - Arrivals

AfterEllen: On Transparent, you play a character who at first seems to be the dream girl here to save Sarah from her unhappy hetero marriage, and then turns out to be an inconsiderate control freak lesbian from hell. Ever dated someone like that?

Melora Hardin: Haven’t we all dated people who seemed to be one thing when you first start dating them, and then they kind of lose their shit? I mean, yeah, definitely.

AfterEllen: Is your character going to be back on Transparent for Season 2?

Melora Hardin (coyly): So I hear! I don’t know. We’ll see.

AfterEllen: Why are you here tonight to support TrevorLIVE, do you consider yourself an ally?

Melora Hardin: Absolutely! I’m here to support more people feeling like they’re not alone, they’ve got a helping hand, they don’t need to hurt themselves or end their life. No one needs to feel terrible about themselves, you can go forward, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. That’s basic human rights! Also, I’m singing tonight. Adam Shankman is a good friend and when he asked me to perform at TrevorLIVE I said ‘of course’!

AfterEllen: What is your favorite part of Tammy & Sarah’s relationship on Transparent?

Melora Hardin: Tammy is very clear on what she wants. All the time. Tammy never wavers, she never waffles, she’s really clear. I find that refreshing because that’s not who I am. I’m always like [pointing in different directions], “Maybe this, maybe that, oh that looks nice, that’s sparkly.” Tammy’s clarity is refreshing, and I think she brings that to Sarah, who is very mercurial. Sarah is up in the clouds and doesn’t know who or what she is, and feels like she has to find that. Tammy is who she is, and I think she’s a rock for Sarah. But I don’t personally think Tammy is the lesbian from hell! I always get very possessive of my characters. People used to call Jan a bitch and I’d be like, “Jan isn’t a bitch!”

AfterEllen: Jan was amazing. I would marry Jan, and she could have tormented me until the end of time. What was it like filming such steamy lesbian sex scenes?

Melora Hardin: Great! Amy Landecker, who plays Sarah, is lovely and a great actress. We get along because we both take our jobs seriously. In order to make something come alive- whether it’s a sex scene or a scene where you’re in fits of laughter. You have to give yourself 100% to that. That’s what we both do, and that’s how we create such hot moments.