Here’s a tip: don’t mess with an actor while in mid-performance – unless the actor is in a production that lends itself to improv.
Neil Patrick Harris has been in a bit of hot water after news outlets reported the actor cursed out a female fan who yelled out “We love you, Neil!” in the middle of a performance of his Broadway show Hedwig and the Angry Inch.
But it turns out his seemingly nasty response was just a bit of in-character improv.
After the seemingly rude young lady expressed her thoughts, Harris yelled back in character, “I’m doing something up here, motherf–ker!”
According to Gossip Cop, Harris was only acting in character and didn’t mean it at all.
A rep for the former How I Met Your Mother actor said the reply, though profane, was all in good fun and in character – playing a German transgender punk rocker named Hedwig.
Neil Patrick Harris as Hedwig in “Hedwig and the Angry Inch. http://t.co/rGawxv7mmR pic.twitter.com/5fsHDnX67Y
— NYC Theatre (@NYCTheatre) April 18, 2014
#TearMeDown @LenaRockerHall @ActuallyNPH #Yitzhak #HEDWIG photo by Joan Marcus pic.twitter.com/FKYN66wdxx
— Hedwig on Broadway (@HedwigOnBway) April 9, 2014
“The response to the fan yelling was actually done in character — Neil as Hedwig, not as though Neil stopped the show to respond out of character,” said Harris’ rep.
“When the fan initially yelled, ‘I love you, Neil,’ Neil (as Hedwig) then responded, ‘Who’s Neil? I’m not Neil.’ He then looked over at Yitzhak (played by Lena Hall) and said, ‘Are you Neil? You better not be Neil’ followed by Hedwig then offering the quote in question,” the rep told the site.“It was all done in good fun, and fully in the context of the show. The audience went crazy and it really was a light-hearted moment…”
It seems my Hedwig improvs are making news, but one should have the full story/context. Gossip Cop clarified: http://t.co/hu7dhM75Mk #thanks
— Neil Patrick Harris (@ActuallyNPH) April 20, 2014
The play is actually a production that allows for improvisation and audience interaction.
#HEDWIG alert! @ActuallyNPH @stephentrask #JohnCameronMitchell @TimesTalks May 20 w/ @aoscott http://t.co/dVHr8PWMMa pic.twitter.com/oBwUqW1eHB
— Hedwig on Broadway (@HedwigOnBway) April 19, 2014
The New York Post reported the moment was met with rapturous applause.
Image via Wikimedia Commons