Freaky's Misha Osherovich: Non-Binary Defined

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

One of the stars of Blumhouse Films’ current horror hit Freaky (in theatres and on-demand) Misha Osherovich is an actor, filmmaker and mental health/LGBTQ IA + activist based in Los Angeles, CA. Misha most recently recurred in the television series NOS4A2 for AMC and appeared in the Warner Brothers feature film THE GOLDFINCH. Misha has amassed numerous stage credits, including A CLOCKWORK ORANGE for New World Stages in New York and HENRY IV at Martha’s Vineyard Playhouse.   

In 2019, Misha produced and starred in the short film E.very D.ay which screened at several film festivals in the United States and internationally, racking up awards including “Best LBGT Film” for The IndieFEST and “Best Experimental Short Film” for Top Shorts Film Festival.

Misha has come out not only once, but twice! Most recently and inspired by some reflection time during COVID, they have come out as non- binary. 

We chatted with Misha about the definition of non-binary, the affect it will have on their career, love and dating in a non-binary world, the use of "hey girl hey", and his creative process in creating their role in Freaky. We also chat about our love of classic films and Jon Hamm...lol

This is metro source mini the official podcast to Metro source magazine and home of short form interviews with your favorite personalities from the lgbtq world and beyond. Quick, Fun and informative. It's metro source on the go, out in proud since one thousand nine hundred and ninety. Well, hello, hello, this is metro source minis. I'm your host, Alexander Rodriguez, lead writer for Metro source and avid podcaster. Is everybody ready to get on freaky? What are the stars of Bloom houses, films, current core hit freaky in theaters and on demand? Misha Osherovich is an actor, filmmaker and mental health lgbtqia plus activists based in La Misha most recently recurred in the Television Series knows for ATU for AMC with my boyfriend Zachary Quinto, and also appeared in Warner brothers feature film the Goldfinch. MISHA has a mass numerous stage credits, including a clockwork orange for new world stages in New York and Henry the fourth at Martha's Vineyard playhouse. And in two thousand and nineteen Misha produced and starred in a short film every day, which screened at several film festivals in the US and Internet internationally, racking up awards including best lgbt film for the Indie Fest and best experimental short film for Top Shorts Film Festival. And MISHA has not only come out once, but twise. Most recently, and inspired by some reflection time during COVID, they have come out as non binary. You can read our in depth interview with me Sha and Metro Soorscom, but please welcome me Shah. Hello, love without how I just love saying your name. You know, we've talked. We've talked a few times and I just like, Oh, I get to talk to Nisha. Yeah, it's me. Well, I mean you said it us. I'm it literally means like Teddy Bear in Russian. Would you know? Ha Ha, but it does rare. Now we're gonna get right to it. What, like I said, you and I have chatted before, and what I love is about how candid you are without airs, about talking about Lgbtq, I aplus issues. So I'm very plainly just going to get to it and I'm going to age myself here. But when, when I came out, gay men who wore feminine clothing war makeup expressed themselves in femininies, if feminine ways. We're just kind of called, you know, queeny gates like that's that's what I grew up with. So UNPEC I'm and now we have this young generation, yourself, coming in with different levels of expression and definition of that expression. So there's this identifier now called non binary, and I want to know from your perspective what non binary means to you and for somebody like me, how it differs from being a gay man with feminine qualities. Sure, I mean, look, the simple's way to look at it is that there's non binary in turn, like there's gender fression and there's gender identity, right, and they both have so much intersection. But there's me wearing makeup, painting my nails and all that kind of stuff. That's a form of gender expression, and then there's...

...gender identity. It's you know, what I walk out of the shower with, it's what I'm at home by myself with, without a beat on my base, stout paint and nails, and it's it's for me. It was actually very much and we've talked about this before, but it was a rejection of the he him male. I didn't I didn't grow up feeling very comfortable with I'm a man, be a man, my myronames are he him that none of that felt at home for me, and that's not quite isolating and like I was pretending to be something that I'm not. And it goes beyond just, you know, feminine qualities or having a fascination with the feminine. It's rejection of the masculine. So I'm happiest when I'm a big ginormous question mark and to me that is a non binary identity. I exist outside of the gender binary. I take what I want from the feminine side, I take what I want from the mass what side, and there's parts of me that are not, that are this again, big genermous question mark, and to mean a binary is a celebration of that. Question Mark is opposed to trying to put a label on something that doesn't want to label. And you put it so beautifully. I mean that's so easily understood and explainable, especially to people that are still kind of grappling with with what this means. Now we know people are born gay. Do you think people are born non binary? I think that people are born all over the gender spectrum and I think that it's. I mean, of course it could. We can be as new ag as we like and say, Oh, gender is a spectrum and gender there's no such tender and I done. I do believe there's no such thing as gender, to be clear. But there's this amazing thing where why put the pressure on somebody to be born gay, born nonbinary? Let somebody be born and move through like however they damn well please and have whatever special emotional, personal, romantic, platonic experiences that they want and express how they want and just stop, you know, freaking caring about it so much. I think that, at the end of the day, that's what all it means to me. Like I move through the world more freely because I do feel look at the way that I want, regardless of what gender norms are. There's this been this huge jumping press for your high profile role in in freaky. Did you have any trepidation about coming out as a nonbinary and how it would affect how people see you, from casting people to industry people, and how do you think it's going to affect your career? I'm sired affects how people see me. People all, People's opinion change, people's opinions of especially artists and public figures change all the time. And Artists and public figures change all the time. I hope that it affects how people see. I want more nonbinary queer outside of the undernorms, outside of stereotypical, you know, gay kids, whatever you're talking about, like tropewise. I want more weird, amazing, authentic Le Representation. So it being out, proud and nonbinary, and my use of pronouns is one way to get there. Than Awesome. I hope it affects me. And you know, we've had this huge influx of entertainment personalities coming out as Trans, as gay, as nonbinary. COVID has really kind of made us reflect on who we are and who we want to be to ourselves and and out to the world. It's a really exciting time. How do you think storytelling is going to be changed in Hollywood for, let's say the next five years? I mean, I think...

...it'll be an absolute reflection of what you just brought up. I mean I hope that upward trend of different kinds of stories and haven't seen before continue to get told. The I think there's a great push now with, you know, all the kind of tumultuals and tumultuous nature of what's going on with the world politically, especially in this country. I'm glad that voices that haven't been able to really have a platform before or finally getting there, whether it be for whatever background you come from, whether it be racially gender wise, you know, wherever you're coming from. I hope that the words is only continue to get lifted up and yeah, I think there was going to be a big shift and what probably would values and what they say. It says in values and the voices that they allowed to have ginormous platforms. I'm and we talked about this exposure that you've had, especially recently with freaky. The press has been amazing, from variety to all the major entertainment outlets to lgbt magazines, even your social media. What's it like to reflect on where you were a year ago in terms of career and also in terms of your personal life? You know, it's funny. was literally like on my balcony like doing that yesterday, like thinking about like my two thousand and twenty. Two Thousand and twenty one looks like it's pretty incredible. I'm not somebody who's very good being proud. I'm always looking ahead and looking ten steps ahead, so to really take a moment to like, you know, I was just in a major film and I played a queer character dated by queer filmmakers, and you know, I'm also a writer in my writing has been going places and I can't wait for that to become more public and I'm so ungrateful. But it's also one of those things where I have to remind myself be proud because I'm I'm that Social Justice Warrior human that I'm not enough. We haven't done enough, which at sometimes can be exhausting and you end up super drained from that when you don't focus on yourself and kind of take a moment to relax and pat yourself on the back. But again, with this kind of being a leader for LGBT Qia plus youth, do you feel that you have to be more careful with what you say, how you act, what you post on social media? That comes with some pressure on it. It does, and you know, look, but I don't think it's any more or the pressure than what everybody's experiencing right now. I think that you know, fortunately or unretomally, however, you view it, cancel cultures incredibly, incredibly real and I think that there's real value and being mindful about what you say, being educated before you tyke a word or post a picture on the Internet, because I got too many times cancel culture and cancel culture. Sensationalism happens because somebody just isn't educated about a particular subject before they state their opinion online about it, and that can usually be quite hard, specially to marginalised communities like the Queer community. So I I just see it as an opportunity to kind of remain vigilant about my education so that I never speak from something, especially if it's not my lived experience, with knowing everything about the subject matter that I'm supposed to before I say something about it. But does that kind of take away the fun of being a young actor in Hollywood, you know, being you know, being a little fun, kind of saying, you know,...

Sassy remarks? However, now it's has to be like you said, it has to be carefully curated, so to speak. Does it kind of take the fun out of out of being in the industry? Um, I would. I think you're right that there's an element of caution that I think that maybe you know a lot of the like much more careless. You know s and early two thousand stars and have to experience. But I also it's also just about mindset. Like one thing that if you know me and if you know my friends, I'll say this about me. The last thing that I do is apologize. You know, I'll certainly, I'll certainly apologize if I've done something wrong, but that's the side of it. I love being proven wrong. So I'm going to say what I want to say with conviction because I will have done a little bit of research about it. But also I if I want to say, you know XYZ curse word, or if I want to post a friend's leaving, sorry by if I my friend my friend, if I want to post something risk a somethink that's, you know, maybe outside of the normal, but the key are person would love for me, then I'm going to do it because it's what makes me happy and it's what fulfills me. And if you have an issue with it and it's not a grounded issue in something that's like work, cancel culturing me about then you can off. Like I I do what I want and I say what I want. Based on my values and I'm pretty darned proud of my value. So, Hey, I call everybody girl, whether you know, no matter a bitch. Please are hand me, and these are phrases. Now some of my friends are stopping me and saying you can't just use those terms freely. You have to be very respectful of where people are in their journey of identification and some people could be offended. And you know, my whole personality is very loud, putting my foot in my mouth all the time. But there is this consideration. Now, what, what's your take on that? And how can somebody like me, who that's just part of my vernacular, how can I be more careful and more respectful? I mean there's the practical side of this, right. So there's like dender neutral stuff, like I think y'all, for example, like I'm not particularly southern, but I say y'all a lot because it's a great gender inclusive way to indicate a to talk to larger people as opposed to the standard you guys, you know. But look, I'll I'm never first one. I'm the first one to agree with you that, like hey, girl, hey, it's like a really fun way to interact, especially with our fellow queers. It's really fun, it's satisfying and, don't get it twisted, a lot of folks, including you, that don't abide by the normal binary love being called girl. For that reason, in that context, I think that the best thing, and you and I kind of tell on the last time we spoke. But like the best way to go about this is put yourself first. So high, my name is Misha. My pronouns are theay them. How about you? You set the stage for a comfort level of honesty and from there I do believe that anybody who really cares deeply about their gender expression and their and their pronouns will a let you know how they feel and be then pretty quickly hintchy, clue you into what's okay. Like a hay girl, hey, or like a all you guys, and I think just setting the press and in our email signatures, in our social media, in person and just saying these are...

...my pronouns, is how identify. How about you? Is a great stage to set for a more conclusive social situation. I want to talk about your role as Josh and in Freaky. I Love Camp Horror Film and Freaky just does it it. You know, it hits all of those boxes that we love, especially in a bloom house film, in your character in particular. You know, it's it's such a nuanced celebration of that can't be gay character that we've known to love from from past horror films. But there's the subtlety and kind of respect and kind of fleshing out of this character as well, and I know that you worked hard on that. So I want to talk about your creative process and created this fun character that avoids being a stereotype. Sure, I mean the it all starts with the writing. Chris Landon and Michael Kennedy, the are Co writers in our director, really took it upon themselves to write a queer role that they would want to see in a film and the growing up as young queer kids. And and I remember telling you this, but like when I audition for the role, even when I when I read the script and I had my session with the director and Chris asked me, you know, is there anything else you want me to know, as I like taking these folks in a consideration to play this role, and I said Yeah, if you give me this kid, if I play this role, I'm going to make him a human I'm going to make him a fully flushed document and I'm not going to fallow the track ups of a gay UST friend stereotype, because I see what you wrote. You wrote a commentary on a gave US friend stereotype. The character is loud, there's a big ASS Merse, there's, you know, hay bid license plate and all of that. All of that's wonderful. And then there's lines like the infamous one from the trailer. You're black, I'm gay, were so dead. That's a commentary on how Hollywood, and horror films in particular, have treated queer characters and charact of color in the past, and we're going way beyond that in this film. So I took what's on the page, I did my research and I made sure that this kid had an internal life I could see on the screen and that little young queer kids watching this film. It might be campy, but they see themselves on screen and I think that that's what was the most important part, is that queer kids see themselves in this character. For sure, all right, you know, you know how Nosey I am. So I just have to ask love and dating as a non binary individual from coming out, have you kind of changed what you're looking for in a relationship? Have have you changed what are has it been changed in whom you're attracted to now that you have come out as as non binary? Nothing in particular, only so far as that. My taste are wide and varied. So, like you know, that's it's more fun to play with. It's a bigger pool. But I I'll put it to you this way. I think in the gay community in particular, you know, we've talked a little bit about that. Like how ells kitchen, we ho a type very kind of toxically almost masculine culture. There's a there's a level of tolerance for bullshit that I think a lot of especially young gays, put up with.

They are told that their bodies need to look a certain way. They deal with potentially abusive or kind of problematic or just um relationships or, you know, Hook up culture. That makes them feel kind of degraded because they think that's what's the norm. And weirdly, coming out as nonbinary has given me this this opportunity to as soon as with that program conversation, like I use, they them pronouns. I'm not a man, I am nonbinary and all of a sudden the level, the level of people that I'm attracting and, moreover, level of people that I will give the time of day to have a date, you know, a covid digitally at this point, or like even tech, text me, Dm me, whatever. It's so much higher because I'm demanding respect from the get go and demanding that you respect my pronouns, respecting gender identity, because it's a huge part of me. And so the quality people, while the quantity might have gone down that I'm interacting with, the quality has gone up because respect is at the forefront of these interactions. Do you think there could be a little kind of trepidation on somebody wanting to date somebody who's nonbinary because they're afraid of using a wrong pronouns, are buying the wrong gift or doing the wrong date because they don't want to offend? Do you think that's a little overwhelming, maybe because we're still learning what non babinary means on a main stream level? I'm sure it could be and I'm sure it is for a lot of people. And the one thing that I'll say that's a that's a partner thing that that is as much on the folks like me that are introducing themselves to the world in this particular and rather new not newing. It's always been around, but like new in terms of like culturals, like geist way and then I just look. I hope that this growing pains period for everybody book on the Binary and non binary side of things, I hope it passes quickly because I I shit you motherfucking not like I just I think I'm a cooler person now. I'm more me, I like me more, I like what I see in the mirror more, I bet better in bed now, like because like I'm, because I'm not apologizing for anything about me. Yeah, so I hope that the growing pains period have get we get a quickly, because I think that people are just outright cool or when they accept themselves completely for who they are. Confidence is sexy no matter who you are, and I agree, and I think I'm especially for a younger generation. I think confidence is key to a success, and so I hope our younger generation is instilled and inspired by that confidence. Okay, so I have to know during covid what is it that you're binge watching on TV? What movies are you watching? So my comfort movies are actually like definitely old school, like I'm talking like Marilyn Monroe. I'd burn like s to s or like, yes, I kind of like I watched that. I have. I'm a big fan of the crown. I love me some stuffy, slow talking British people and I got it is so low. I know, I love it. It's the same reason I love like mad men. I want to watch like sweat droop up and John Ham. I...

...mean, who doesn't? But you know, I I think we should create a spinoff of the crown and it's about all of like the gayweight staff that talks crap about their outfits and how slowly they're talking, like we need to do that. There's a show about that is called doubt nabby big, like I absolutely love it, you know. And I'm addicted to classic films and that time period that you mentioned, from the s to the s. That is my jam Turner. Classic movies is on all the time in the background. Yeah, yeah, yes, like my Saturdays and Sundays it's like breakfast in bed and it's watching whatever movie is on. But it's funny because films that I used to thoroughly enjoy. I'm having a real issue with some of the massagynistic themes some of the script and I know that we've evolved, but now that we're becoming so aware of people and how they identify and respect towards women and equality, these movies kind of take on a whole different spirit and some films that had been become my favorites are kind of tarnishing because it is so obvious how far we have become in how we're represented on screen, even the treatment of women and minorities. You know, some of the movies are very eye opening to revisit. They are. It's so funny bring it up. I was I was watching, you know, breakfast antiphanies for the billionth time this past week and you don't added you don't TC I'm at. It is a little disclaimer at the beginning of a lot of these movies. You know, Mickey Rooney's portrayal of an Asian person is incredibly problematic, as some of the ways that audrey a frons character is treated as a New York call girl, and the beginning of the movie has a statement card that says some characters and situations in this film are now are not up to par with current cultural standards and they are a product of their time. I think that's a really classy way to indicate that these are not standards we should uphold now, but to respect the art that was made. You know what I mean. You know I could talk to you for hours and hours, like you know that, and I cannot wait till we can like sit and spill the tea after all of this is on. Now talk about a little rapid fire. Yes, give it, give it, okay, but do it. You can go back in time and start in any film. Is the lead male or female? which which role would it be? As point, I kind of want to play Mariel, woman rose roll in some like a hot that sounds so fun. Yeah, yeah, we know misha means Teddy Bear, but what is your spirit animal? Oh, I'm a dolphin. I've always loved dolphins and also they're incredibly sexually active and they're one of the first animal that were discovered that like homosexual behaviors and their societies really cool. And they're also them and you know, they're always talking shit, like they're just always out there, like, hmm, that was shopping. Sounds like you're Dobbin. Yep, yeah, okay, your worst out audition. My worst? What audition? Oh Um, one of them. Okay, so one of...

...them is actually about. It was what? It was a Russian audition and like, I speak Ruttian. It's not brilliant, I speak it, and this casting director probably knowstar to. This casting director started like grilling me, like really hard Russian words. That something that my parents like, struggled to even think of, like you're showing the amount of me, and I stopped. I'm like, are you having a bad day? Not The move. I didn't book it, obviously. That is my favorite kind of moments to have, though, is when you call somebody on their behavior, because there's just like the silence and awkward tension. It's like, yeah, I called you on it, even though it could ruin your audition, but still, okay, a fashion trend that you fell victim to that you just look back and you sigh. I did. The baggy jeans, Big Fat Baggyge has like to too many weight sizes, too big. There was no shape, and look, I'm a little, tiny, little human, and so it was bad news. Bear, I'm sure too, and I used to wear those like raver pants with the huge like bottomed. It was ridiculous. Ridiculous. Okay, what with the name of a horror film based on your dating life be called the name of a horror film based on my dating life? How many fights can you have with yourself? Who? I like that like like a like a jackal, and hide with yourself? HMM, because I don't date. Okay, join the club. All right, we should tell everybody where you want them to find you and follow you. Find me on it's at Misha osherobits on air platform, instagram, twitter. I highly recommend instagram because I don't know how to you twit her. Yeah, I love talking with you. A great rest of the holiday season. I wish you nothing but the best for New Year and in two thousand and twenty one we will be sitting down yet we will. It's such a pleasure being here. Thank you for joting me. Love you, leving to. That was my chat with Misha. Please Watch freaky. It's in theaters and it's on in demand. It's a great film and it covers a lot of different themes and, yeah, we love it. And that is our episode. I'm your hosting Lee. Writer for Metro source. Magazine. You can follow me on Instagram at Alexander's on air. Until next time, stay true and do you boom? That has been another metro source mini like share, subscribe on your favorite podcast player and check out the latest issue of Metro Sports magazine on newstands or online at Metro sourcecom. Follow us on Facebook, instagram at natural source and on twitter at Metro course man. Until next time, he fast.

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