Luke Macfarlane, who came to fame as Scotty on ABC's Brothers & Sisters, is back on US network television.
He is again playing a gay character but this time he is a military man on NBC's new hospital drama The Night Shift.
His character of Rick is involved with a semi-closeted doctor named Drew - a former military man - who is played by Brendan Fehr.
Macfarlane is openly gay is real life and Fehr, who is straight, caused some controversy last week in an interview where he discussed his discomfort in kissing another man on screen for the first time.
Macfarlane has nothing but good things to about his co-star.
Brendan, he’s great,' the actor tells The Backlot. 'He’s a fellow Canadian. I really enjoyed him. He’s very serious about his work and really enjoys talking about the scenes. I was tremendously impressed with him. He really did his work. ... He’s great and very handsome.'
The actor, whose character ended up in the hospital where Drew works this week, sheds some light on the relationship.
'I think they’re pretty solid,' Macfarlane says. 'I think they’re actually representative of a lot of the military guys that I’m actually friends with in that they have these really clear boundaries about what can and can’t be discussed, but I think that they really value each other and they bond over this sort of separate life that they have together.'
He adds: 'They definitely vacation, they spend time together. I don’t think necessarily anybody’s bringing them home to meet Mom and Dad, but ... it’s really a good representation at least of a few of the gay, military couples that I know that both happen to be enlisted. But I think they’re pretty healthy, other than the distance between them, which technology has made easy.'
Between Brothers & Sisters and The Night Shift, Macfarlane played a straight role in the Canadian comedy Satisfaction. He's happy to see less resistance to openly gay actors playing it straight onscreen.
'I think that that’s why I got into acting, you know, to play all kinds of different roles,' he says. 'It’s really exciting, and I think the other fields are opening up. I think (football player) Michael Sam has been just a fascinating and an amazing thing to watch unfold. Yes, I really do believe it’s easier and I’m so grateful for that. It’s going to make for a better world.'