SAN FRANCISCO — Titan Media has announced the release of “Out! The Story of Coming Out in Professional Sports,” which stars Jesse Jackman as a baseball champion who comes out as gay.
In the film, Jackman portrays A.J. Benson, a hall-of-fame catcher and the manager of the three-time world champion San Francisco Titans baseball team. “Out” will be available online at TitanMen.com beginning this Wed., Mar. 2.
“I’m so excited about an athlete coming out story,” Jackman said. “When I was a college athlete and still closeted, I watched a lot of porn. If I’d seen a movie in which one of the characters came out, I might have been inspired to do the same. Maybe I’m hoping for too much, but perhaps that’ll happen for someone who watches ‘Out!’ — some nervous, closeted collegiate athlete — and it’ll help him become a more complete, comfortable person. This film will push a lot of erotic buttons for people, but it can also be a great social statement.”
"Out!" is the brainchild of Jackman and TitanMen Vice President Keith Webb. While the core of the film is presented as adult-oriented entertainment, ‘Out!’ also features a G-rated, emotionally charged, realistic interview segment that covers topics like the difficulties of growing up as a closeted gay athlete, the challenges of being gay in professional sports, and the ways that LGBT public figures can be encouraging to the fans who look up to them.
Webb said, “We wanted to highlight and celebrate the growing acceptance of openly gay athletes in professional sports. One of the biggest stigmas holding back gay athletes from coming out is the fear of losing corporate sponsorships. All that is now changing with companies like Nike and Adidas making very public statements in support of openly gay athletes. Jesse’s recent article in Huffington Post’s Queer Voices section sums up the fears and frustration of closeted gay athletes very well.”
The film’s companion website, OutBaseball.com, includes additional material such as behind-the-scenes photos and videos, the original production script, and links to resources where gay athletes at all levels can find community and support.
Production on “Out!” began in July 2015 with TitanMen director Jasun Mark at the helm. The film’s cast features five exclusive TitanMen performers: Jackman, Dallas Steele, Nick Prescott, Diesel Washington, and Eric Nero, joined by industry veteran Luke Adams and Jackman’s real-life husband Dirk Caber.