Jesse Williams, Before Video Leak, Said Broadway Nude Scene Had Made Him Fearless

The “Take Me Out” star told Andy Cohen he “wouldn’t be scared of anything after this”

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One night before a leaked video spread across Twitter, Jesse Williams discussed his full frontal nude Broadway scene, which has since set the internet ablaze.

Williams appeared with Jesse Tyler Ferguson and their fellow castmates on Andy Cohen’s “Watch What Happens Live,” and when Cohen broached the subject, Williams seemed pretty relaxed about the whole thing. First Cohen asked if the audience reacted to the nudity in “Take Me Out,” for which Williams has been Tony-nominated.

“A non-reaction is a really interesting reaction,” Williams responded. “The quiet, you know, creates a lot of insecurity.”

Cohen then asked if the guys like a reaction to nudity onstage.

“I don’t like any of it,” Williams said. “You can’t re — I’ve learned in my minutes in theater, which is all a first for me — don’t start trying to read into it because it just creates more insecurity.”

“How insane, though? This is your stage debut and you’re, like, fully naked. I mean, that’s doubly scary,” Cohen reacted.

“I’m told it’s quite insane, but, so it’s a first,” Williams said. “I got nothing to compare it to and I’ll be pretty uh — I won’t be scared of anything after this, that’s for sure.”

Later on in the conversation, when Cohen brought up the fact that Williams would be presenting his fully naked self to audiences which could include his agents and his family, he reacted calmly once more.

“It’s a body,” the actor said “Once you see it, you realize it’s whatever, it’s a body!”

“True, but on the other hand, isn’t it much better also when you feel better about your penis when you’re doing it?” Cohen responded. 

“I would imagine so — I don’t, so I don’t know,” Williams said, adding when Cohen prompted him further that he was joking.

The “Take Me Out” revival has been playing on Broadway for a month. In the Tony-Award winning Best Play by Richard Greenberg, Williams portrays Darren Leming, a talented center fielder for the Empires, who comes out as gay and faces varying reactions off the baseball field.