Actor Miss Benny has long been an expert in all things glitz and fabulous. It only makes sense that they were cast in Netflix’s “Glamorous” in a role that represented many facets of their personal identity. Miss Benny’s career has blended a colorful boundary-breaking blend of makeup, acting, and music, which landed them a 2018 role on “Fuller House” as the franchise’s first openly gay character.
The 24-year-old actor hails from Dallas, Texas. They began their career in the beauty sector of the digital world, while attending the same acting school once attended by Selena Gomez. After a move to Los Angeles, California several years ago, things began to truly pick up for Miss Benny, and they were tapped for the lead in “Glamorous.”
Miss Benny’s Journey
“Glamorous” will follow Miss Benny’s character, influencer and makeup artist Marco Mejia, as they suddenly find themselves with the opportunity to revolutionize the fashion industry. Mejia is offered a job with supermodel turned makeup mogul Madolyn Addison (Kim Cattrall), and the envelope of queer joy is opened for the company. Miss Benny, who identifies as nonbinary, found it incredibly moving to have the opportunity to bring the non-binary and gender-nonconforming perspective to the streaming giant.
“This was the first time I read a project where I immediately identified with the character. It had been so many years of being told it wasn’t time yet for a gender-nonconforming lead, that it wasn’t the right moment. When I got the first call about ‘Glamorous’ coming around and that they had been looking at me for it, I was immediately attached to it,” said Benny.
“And I remember at the time, I was saying, ‘If I don’t get this, then I just must retire because this is the most perfect thing for me, and I’ll be so sad if I don’t get to do it.’ The fact that I get to play this role is just so amazing and validating. I just kept looking around being like, ‘I can’t believe I get to do this.’ This is such an important project to me, and hopefully an important project to everyone else.”
Why “Glamorous” Shimmers
While LGBTQ+ representation in popular media has significantly increased in recent decades, many popular shows continue to depict queer trauma. “Glamorous” creates an environment that instead consistently uplifts and celebrates the community, something that Miss Benny felt was a breath of fresh air.
“Marco’s queerness and Marco’s flamboyant attitude is completely seen as a superhero. There’s never any point where Marco is criticized or faces any sort of prejudice or homophobia for being that way. It’s completely normalized and celebrated. And that’s something that I feel about my own queerness: every time that I succeed or I feel good about myself, it’s because I’m accepting the flamboyant parts of myself,” said Benny.
“And so, I think that I identify with Marco in that way, and I loved playing Marco because it felt so special to play somebody who’s successful at work, successful in relationships, and successful at family.”
The Historic Proportions Of “Glamorous”
The show comes at a pivotal moment for the LGBTQ+ community. Not only is it Pride Month, but several states in the U.S. continue to pass homophobic legislation. Several states are attempting to or have succeeded in banning drag performances, banning gender affirming healthcare for minors, and more. Miss Benny hopes that “Glamorous” can offer a welcome escape from the darker things many LGBTQ+ people are facing right now.
“I think that [queer joy] is something that is very important for queer people to see right now, because lots is going on in the news for us right now. And so, having a form of just pure joy and escapism is something I’m really proud to be a part of,” said Miss Benny.
One show that Miss Benny has fond nostalgic memories of is “Sex and the City,” in which their “Glamorous” costar stars as Samantha Jones. Miss Benny was honored to have the opportunity to work with someone they look up to so much in the entertainment industry.
“Anytime that I made her laugh was so amazing because she’s provided so many amazing laughs for me as a fan of ‘Sex in the City.’ I think of this time that we were filming with a dog, and the dog’s name was Tequila. I remember I was walking by Kim before we shot the scene, and she was holding the dog and she was like, ‘Benny, have you met Tequila?’, and I went, ‘Honey, have I?’, and she laughed and I was like, ‘Okay, I’m in.’”
Kim Cattrall’s Reign
Despite their soft spot for Samantha Jones, Miss Benny feels that they identify with the personalities of several of the main characters on “Sex and the City.”
“I want to believe in my heart that I’m Samantha, because I always just loved Samantha. But honestly, I feel like I’m somewhere between a Miranda and a Carrie. I definitely feel like Marco is Carrie. I played so much of my performance of Marco using Carrie as a reference point because Marco is very emotional and very expressive and very vibrant, and just a mile a minute, and that’s something that I always really loved about Carrie Bradshaw,” said Benny.
Miss Benny has a lot to be proud of from their performance. They specifically recall the hard work put into the show’s several dance numbers.
“I’m particularly proud of a couple dance numbers that we have in the show. We do a song and a dance from ‘Chicago’ later on in the show that I think everyone will think is so funny and so amazing,” said Benny.
Glamor aside, Miss Benny hopes that the show will raise awareness surrounding the diverse array of queer experiences.
“My hope is that people will watch the show and see how much fun it is, and see how lovable all the characters are, and hopefully open their minds a little bit to see that queer people are just like everyone else. We’re just a little more shiny and a little more flamboyant,” said Benny.
“Glamorous” is now streaming on Netflix.