SAN FRANCISCO — Jesse Jackman, who stars in TitanMen's new release, "Out!," offers words of encouragement to gay athletes coming out of the closet in "It Takes Balls," a video posted on the film's companion website, OutBaseball.com.
"Out!" features five TitanMen contract performers: Jackman, Dallas Steele, Nick Prescott, Diesel Washington and Eric Nero, joined by industry veteran Luke Adams and Jackman's real-life fiancé Dirk Caber.
"Out!" tells the story of A.J. Benson, a fictional baseball hall-of-famer played by Jackman. In "Out!," Benson decides to come out during a live television interview hosted by sportscaster Jim Weaver, played by Steele.
"I needed a movie like 'Out!' when I was trying to confront my demons in the locker room 20 years ago," Jackman said. "If I had seen this film when I was in college, it might have helped me accept myself then as the proud gay athlete I have since become. I hope 'Out!' acts as that catalyst for someone today."
In the "It Takes Balls" video, Jackman relates his own experiences as a once-closeted athlete in the world of team sports. Jackman hopes that his personal story will inspire other LGBT athletes to find courage within themselves, and to seek out gay and gay-friendly peers who share the same competitive spirit.
"When I was growing up, I never really fit in," Jackman said in the "It Takes Balls" video. "I liked sports, but I never felt like I could play them and be comfortable in my own skin.....But when I was in my early twenties, I found a gay ice hockey league. The level of companionship and camaraderie was just absolutely remarkable."
Jackman, who also played in gay rugby and flag football leagues, encouraged gay and lesbian athletes to join LGBT-friendly clubs in their area.
"There's hope out there," Jackman said in the video. "You don't have to be good as long as you're out there having fun. It changed my life, and it'll change yours."
For more information on "Out!," visit the film's official website.