Actor Jake Borelli, perhaps best known for his portrayal of Dr. Levi Schmitt on Grey’s Anatomy, came out on Instagram last night, just after his character on the show came out.
Borelli has been out to family and friends for over a decade, and he considered coming out to his fans when showrunner Krista Vernoff called him this summer and asked if he wanted his character to be a part of the show’s first relationship between two men.
“She pitched the story to me and said how much she wanted Levi to be the character to tell this story, the coming out in your mid-twenties story. She expressed how much she wanted me to be the actor to tell it,” he said.
Borelli told Entertainment Weekly that he called his family to ask them if he should come out in real life too.
“My dad said, ‘When you have a truth about yourself and you finally have the courage to speak up and share that truth, a weight gets lifted,’” Borelli recalled. “I knew in that moment this is the right thing to do. This is bigger than me.”
After Grey’s Anatomy aired in Pacific Time, he posted a coming out message on Instagram.
“As a gay guy myself, tonight’s episode was so special to me,” he wrote. “This is exactly the kind of story I craved as a young gay kid growing up in Ohio, and it blows my mind that I’m able to bring life to Dr. Levi Schmitt as he begins to grapple with his own sexuality this season on Grey’s Anatomy.”
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As a gay guy myself, tonight's episode was so special to me. This is exactly the kind of story I craved as a young gay kid growing up in Ohio, and it blows my mind that I'm able to bring life to Dr. Levi Schmitt as he begins to grapple with his own sexuality this season on Grey’s Anatomy. His vulnerability and courage inspire me every day, and I hope he can do the same for you. To all of you who feel like little Levis out there, know that I do too, that you are seen, and that we're all in this together. And to everyone who has supported me over the years, I can't thank you enough, and I love you more than all the stars…