Lewis Fellows gets a Quickie with rugby superman Gareth Thomas. They talk about Coming Out, Mickey Rourke and his brand new fitness DVD.
TGUK – Gareth! You’ve been incredibly busy recently! What’s been dominating your schedule lately?
GT – Yes it’s been very hectic – first of all I’ve been filming, producing then promoting my fitness DVD which will be hitting the shops shortly. I’ve often been asked how I keep in shape and I thought what a good way to answer if I did a DVD. It’s a very varied DVD which we shot in many places and I am really proud of the production. As a bonus my foundation gets a royalty on every sale!
TGUK – Obviously, you’re a big name in both the sporting world and indeed in gay culture. How did coming out affect your career and of course your life. You coming out was headline news for weeks, and I’m sure you knew that this would be the case?
GT – Yes I always knew that it would be a big deal in the press, especially after my long rugby career, but I never expected where it would lead. It had a massive impact on me, but at the end of the day I thought that if I coming out would help one person who may be going through what I was going through, then it would be worth it. I wanted to come out for many reasons but an important one is that I wanted to inspire people within sport and break down some barriers. There have been some massive highs and lows but it’s mainly been positive.
TGUK – You came out privately to your wife and your family. How did they react?
GT – My family were amazing – once it was taken in, my dad, who is a very tough man, sat me down at home with the family; he opened a bottle of champagne and said “this is a toast to the rest of your life son”. It was overwhelming, and my family as a whole have been superb.
TGUK – As is the case with many newly “out” gay men and women, did you feel as if a weight had been lifted, or were there any feelings of regret?
GT – As you can imagine there were loads of emotions going on! But yes the main one was that an enormous weight had been lifted from my shoulders.
TGUK – So, you have a new fitness DVD coming out… It looks BRILLIANT and is packed with celebrity guests. What was it like working with them?
GT – Superb! My good mates Nicola McLean and Kirk Norcross were excellent, as was Mickey Rourke, who gives us a world exclusive 15 minute interview which is on the extras. It was so good to catch up with them all. And my instructor was great – she really beasted me!
TGUK – Unlike many of the others, this is set in various locations like Hollywood, London and Malibu Beach. What was the filming like?
GT – We had a whale of a time – we filmed below the Hollywood sign and even did a scene in Mickey’s mansion in Beverly Hills 90210! We also filmed at the sugar hut and various places in Wales. We wanted to give the DVD a bit of variety and filming in all the different locations certainly did that.
TGUK – Are you seeing anyone? If not…I’m always available… *cough – cough*
GT – (Laughs) That would be telling… And thanks for the offer!
TGUK – Word on the street is a biopic about you is being made, with names like Tom Hardy and Mickey Rourke attached. Can you give us any details?
GT – Yes I certainly can – the film is undergoing the final contractual bits and pieces and we hope to start filming in the middle of 2013. Mickey is moving to Wales early next year to train and get fit for the filming. So I’ll be spending 4 months showing Mickey the sights!
TGUK – Other than the upcoming film, what plans do you have for the future?
GT – Well I can’t say too much but watch this space come January – I may well be doing something very exciting that will mean you may be seeing a hell of a lot more of me!