Reality shows are all about drama. And, for the most part, they’re all about manufactured drama. A recent contestant on the X Factor is claiming that the show’s producers forced him to come out of the closet during his audition.
Don Phillip claims that he was bullied into admitting that he was gay before he auditioned on June 16. Phillip says that he was asked about “his secret” by one of the producers backstage. Phillip admitted that he was gay but said that he didn’t want to talk about it on stage.
Phillip was bullied into making the admission, however, when L.A. Reid repeatedly asked him to reveal his secret on stage.
“Backstage, I’d talked to the producers about what was my secret was. And I mentioned that my secret was I was gay, but I really didn’t want to talk about it on the show. So, minutes later when I got on stage, L.A. Reid said, ‘What’s the secret? What’s the secret?’ over and over again. And I had to say it. I just felt like they were going to say it so I felt like I needed to say it first. And, I was just so emotionally distraught, I couldn’t pull it together to actually sing.”
The X Factor contestant claims that he became suicidal after the incident and was eventually able to convince producers to cut out his 10 minute interview.
“It was kind of a private thing they forced out of me… I would say bullied out of me. After that thing, I went home and had thoughts of (suicide). I was so destroyed that they set me up…”
Fox released a statement after Phillip made his accusation claiming that the singer had volunteered the information and that everyone was shocked when he said that he was gay.
Fox said in a statement:
“The judges were not given any information at all about Mr. Philip prior to his audition. The personal information that Mr. Philip quickly volunteered at the start of his audition was a surprise to the judges, who asked what had happened during the past 10 years, as they were interested in Mr. Philip’s career. While we understand his decision to discuss his personal life, Mr. Philip’s sexual orientation was not something that any of the judges or producers felt was relevant to this audition… When advertising and promoting open auditions, thousands of people are informed about the ways to enter the show. Mr. Philip himself chose to enter for a chance to win a five million dollar recording contract.”
Here’s a video from Don Phillip’s performance on X Factor.