“Dashing in December” is Juan Pablo Di Pace’s first gay love story

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It’s queer romantic comedy season – and what a season!

Paramount Network’s latest LGBTQ + project, Dashing in December, gather Fuller house star Juan Pablo Di Pace, Golden Globe winner Andie MacDowell, and Young and restless star Peter Porte in a story about family, acceptance and Christmas in Utah.

When Porte’s character, Wyatt, a quintessentially New York career-focused businessman, visits his rural hometown for the holidays, he ends up meeting Heath (Di Pace), a resident of the city with a smile. killer and a heart of gold. Wyatt aims to sell his mother’s ranch, but as the attraction blossoms between the two, he finds himself falling back in love with the small town. In typical holiday movie fashion, Dashing in December finally answers the age-old question, what really matters in life?

Argentina’s Di Pace is no stranger to melting the hearts of viewers. In addition to his roles in Fuller House, Dallas, and NBC-TV The Bible continues, where he played Jesus Christ, the Emmy-nominated actor and People’s Choice Award winner also appeared on the Dancing with the stars season 27, where he became a semi-finalist.

But for Di Pace, Dashing in December welcomed a new kind of creative process.

“It’s a strange mixture of freedom and Oh fuck,” he says Outside. “You say to yourself, Oh, I kiss a boy and that’s what usually turns me on in real life, and at the same time you’re nervous because you’ve never allowed yourself to be so free in this setting. I’ve played gay twice before but this is my first time doing a romance and it opens up a whole box of verse. This movie was very therapeutic.

This realization hit home in a moving scene in which the characters of Di Pace and Porte open up to each other about their feelings.

“I cried,” he recalls. “Not just because the scene is beautiful, but because I saw myself on screen being affectionate with a man. The film had that effect on me, it softened me. When you’re an actor, you’re so used to playing a certain kind of straight role that you kind of leave that other side of yourself on a shelf. ”

“I think the reason romantic comedies are so necessary and important right now is that at the end of the year we come to a place where we want to explore our lives and ask ourselves, am I happy? ” he says. “Am I happy with my life?” Am I satisfied with my work? Am I happy with the person I am with? Am I happy alone? These films are sort of therapeutic that way. And if you’re in a crappy place, they make you believe in love again.

Di Pace made headlines last year when he came out publicly at a TedX event in the Netherlands. His talk, titled “The Story of Your Life,” focused on the stories we tell each other.

“At the beginning of my life, my story was like a drama because when I was a child, I was bullied,” he explains. “Then later in life I was like, I’m the captain of this ship so I changed my perspective. I mentioned that I was gay because I was arguing that being bullied actually led me to become an actor. And because I’m an actor, I get to experience so much, enjoy so many places and people, and do what I love. My life used to be a drama, but now I see it as an epic story.

Still, the actor says there’s still a long way to go when it comes to exploring the terrains of the rom-com genre.

“I think it’s about opening up the nuances and what makes LGBTQ + people special,” he says. “I think the tie is the most amazing thing that has happened in the past five years. At the same time, I also believe that we should accept the differences between each of us. Yes, we are all the same. Yes, we are all human. Yes, we all love it. But there are little things that minorities and different groups of people and different cultures of people and different sexualities have that are so interesting to watch and explore. I want to see romantic comedies, LGBTQ + stories, and vacation movies that delve deeper into these unrepresented people.

Di Pace, who has worked in Hispanic markets around the world, including Madrid, where his parents live, said he would continue to use his platform to encourage young gay people to be themselves. Like his old one DWTS her partner, Cheryl Burke, was telling her, “You do, boo boo. “

“I still think it’s crucial and essential for every human being to really listen to their own heart, what their mind and heart are telling them, and that is the most important thing,” he says. “If you feel like you have to hide or that you have to live a certain life, ask yourself what do I want?” Is this my wish? It is very important to train this voice so that it becomes stronger.

Dashing in December premieres on Paramount Network on Sunday, December 13.

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