Star of “Bodyguard” Richard Madden deflected questions about a potential relationship with “13 Reasons Why” star Brandon Flynn. Madden, 32, talked about keeping her personal life private, according to Fox News’ Jessica Napoli.
“I just keep my personal life personal,” the 32-year-old told The New York Times. “I’ve never talked about my relationships.”
Per Napoli, the two have been photographed on “numerous occasions,” which have led to dating rumors. Flynn has previously dated British singer Sam Smith, while Madden has been connected primarily to women in the past, including “Doctor Who” star Jenna Coleman.
Flynn has become a public figure for the LGBTQ community since 2017. Here’s what you need to know about him, his acting career and his past relationships.
1. Flynn Hails From Miami, Where He Started His Acting Career
Born on Oct. 11, 1993, Flynn is from Miami. He went to high school at New World School of the Arts, according to Seventeen.
His first role came at age 10, when he played Mr. Smee in “Peter Pan.” He said in the above video to Broadwaycom that he never memorized his lines and had the hiccups the first time.
He eventually worked his way to a bachelor’s in fine arts from the Mason Gross School of Fine Arts at Rutgers University in New Brunswick (N.J.). He is mentioned in promotional material on NewJerseyStage.com for a 2013 production of a show titled “What’s It Gonna Be?” He graduated in January 2016.
2. He Quickly Found Decent Roles, Including a Spot on CBS’ “Braindead” and on Broadway
From February to mid-March in 2017, Flynn played in a big role in the Broadway show “Kid Victory” at the Vineyard Theatre. The description at the theatre’s website of the musical reads:
Seventeen-year-old Luke returns to his small Kansas town after a wrenching one-year absence. As his friendship grows with the town misfit, Emily, his parents realize that in order to truly find their son, they must confront some unnerving truths about his disappearance.
He received excellent reviews for his performance. He also found himself in one episode of the CBS show “Braindead,” where he played Mike the Intern. The show combined political plotlines with a zombie apocalypse. Flynn’s character’s head explodes in the 7th episode “The Power of Euphemism: How Torture Became a Matter of Debate in American Politics.”
3. He Broke Out in the Role of Justin Foley in “13 Reasons Why”
His biggest credit to date came in the role of Justin Foley on the Netflix show “13 Reasons Why.” Foley is a star basketball player at Liberty High School and is dating the character Jessica. One of the bigger revelations (SPOILERS) is that he allows Jessica to get raped at a party by one of his friends on the team named Bryce.
The show has received a fair amount of criticism for its depiction of suicide, as a study showed a 13 percent uptick in successful youth suicides in the three months following the premiere of the first season.
Flynn has countered the negative stigma by adding a tattoo of a semi-colon on his forearm, which is a symbol behind the suicide awareness movement. He wrote in an Instagram post with a picture of the new ink:
My new addition ;) As a pledge of love and hope for people who deal with suicidal thoughts, depression, addiction, and self injury… be the author of your own story and allow your story to continue because it could help others and change the world. I love you and please go to 13reasonsehy.info for resources and to find out people care ?got it In blue for Hannah Baker and her polish
Hannah Baker is the protagonist of the show who commits suicide in the first season.
4. He Came Out Publicly in Sep. 2017 in an Instagram Post
In response to legislation in Australia trying to ban same-sex marriage in 2017, Flynn decided to officially announce that he is part of the LGBTQ community. According to E! News, he used his social media platform and a plane dragging the words “Vote No” to counter the proposed bill.
In the emotional Instagram post shared on Sunday, the actor, who plays bad boy Justin Foley on the hit Netflix show, posted a rainbow flag that read “Equality” and wrote, “Too many of my friends have been kicked out of their homes, kept in the closet, beat up, killed, ridiculed by church and state, institutionalized… and you are scared that if we vote YES, you won’t be able to show your hate for Us. F–k that. We’ve been scared sh-tless our whole lives thanks to all the stigmas that surround us, stigmas that were set in place by the same kind of people who flew that plane over Sydney.”
He later says in the post that: “We’ve fought, we’ve come out bravely even in our fear, and you wrote a message in the sky because you’re scared.”
5. He Broke Up “Amicably” With Sam Smith Last September, Opening Up the Possibility for a Potential Relationship With Madden
Part of the speculation linking Flynn to Madden is that the former is no longer dating Smith. According to People, the two dated for eight months. Smith said the relationship ended well.
“I’m still trying to figure out what I took from that relationship and what it meant to me,” Smith told UK’s The Times of his eight-month relationship with Flynn. “It’s still quite raw.
“Brandon was wonderful,” Smith said. “All my relationships have ended in a nice way, never nasty.”
Their affection was never a secret, as they frequently were photographed kissing each other and holding hands.
Part of the surprising news about Flynn potentially being with Madden would be that the latter’s previous flames were Coleman, “Nocturnal Animals” star Ellie Bamber and model Suki Waterhouse. Madden has not previously indicated he was gay or bisexual.