Olly Alexander says groundbreaking TV series Queer As Folk ‘left a mark’ on him

Pop star Olly Alexander has said groundbreaking drama Queer As Folk “left a mark on me” as he discussed working with creator Russell T Davies.

Alexander stars as a promiscuous aspiring actor in It’s A Sin, which explores the HIV/Aids crisis and its impact on London in the 1980s.

It is created by award-winning writer Davies, whose 1999 TV drama Queer As Folk told the story of young gay men in Manchester.

Alexander, 30, is openly gay and said he was shaped by watching the series as a teenager.

Olly Alexander
Olly Alexander

He said: “Well, I remember being 14 years old and watching Queer As Folk with my friend at her house in secret, in her upstairs bedroom away from her parents.

“And I remember being so scandalised because I’d never seen men on television touching each other before, or with their clothes off, and it was very scandalous to me at that time, and it left a mark on me ever since.

“It wasn’t until later, until I was revisiting Queer As Folk, and I felt like it had such an important part in shaping me as a gay guy and the culture and the community I’ve grown up in.”

Alexander is best known for fronting chart-topping synth-pop trio Years & Years.

But he has not ruled out more acting in future – if the right part comes along.

He said: “I think it’s going to be very hard to top this experience because it was a real dream come true. Everyone that was in front of the camera, amazing people, people behind the camera were amazing people.

“But I do want to play someone with magic powers. So I’m definitely open to being like a sexy gay witch or something.”

It’s A Sin starts on Channel 4 on Friday January 22.