And Just Like That… star Sara Ramirez has opened up about a mental health crisis they faced during the early stages of the pandemic that resulted in the actor contemplating suicide.
Ramirez – who previously came out as non-binary, using they/them pronouns – spoke to Variety about the incident, as well as the polarizing reaction from fans about the character Che Diaz on the Sex and the City revival show.
‘I remember calling the National Suicide Hotline for the very first time,’ Ramirez, 46, told the publication in a cover interview that was published on Wednesday.
Revealing: And Just Like That’s Sara Ramirez reveals they contemplated suicide amid mental health crisis during the pandemic and addresses polarizing reaction to character Che Diaz
‘I called some folks, but their phones were off, and I thought, “Well, there’s this hotline…”
‘This person really talked me off a ledge, and got me back into my body. I could acknowledge my feelings without becoming them, and it was really helpful. I was particularly vulnerable at that time, and I sought out support,’ they added.
‘I got that support, but it was a really rough year where, for the most part, I had to release all attachments to permanence in every direction.’
It is not clear what triggered the incident.
Struggle: Ramirez – who previously came out as non-binary, using they/them pronouns – spoke to Variety about her mental health crisis
Glam shoot: The Tony Award-winning actor looked stunning in the shoot
The Mexican-American actor and singer received a strong reaction from fans when they joined And Just Like That… last year, with many fans taking issue over the character’s romance with Miranda Hobbes (played by Cynthia Nixon.)
But Ramirez said they deliberately swerved reading any of the negative or positive reactions. “Other people’s opinions of a character — that’s not something I can allow into my process,’ they told the publication.
The finale of the show saw Che leaving New York for Los Angeles to film a TV show, with Miranda poised to follow her there.
Teasing details about the second season, Ramirez said: ‘The first season was judging a book by its cover, and Season 2 is about reading the book.’
The heart of the matter: Ramirez sported red makeup with a heart silhouette across their face
Blocking it out: Ramirez said they deliberately swerved reading any of the negative or positive reactions to the character Che Diaz
Elsewhere in the cover interview, Cynthia Nixon – who came out as a lesbian herself in 2004 – also contributed some quotes about the fan reaction to Miranda leaving Steve for a queer relationship.
Director Michael Patrick King is said to have asked her ‘Do you want Miranda to be queer or not?’ to which Nixon replied: ‘Sure, why not!’
Nixon reasoned that Miranda, ‘had many queer and frankly, lesbianic qualities about her,’ and that the character was ‘a stand-in for the gay woman we didn’t have.
Referencing Kim Cattrall’s character Samantha – who had a lesbian relationship in season four of the original show – she said: ‘I think Samantha was a different kind of queer.’
Controversy: Sara Ramirez’s character caused a stir among die-hard fans of Sex and the City
King also spoke to Variety for the cover feature, revealing: ‘One of my burning passions about Season 2 is Che.’
He added: ‘I want to show the dimension of Che that people didn’t see, for whatever reason – because they were blinded, out of fear or terror. I want to show more of Che rather than less of Che. Like, really.’
He also shared an anecdote from his friend, filmmaker Gregg Araki, who apparently asked him: ‘How does it feel to have created the most polarizing character in all 5,000 shows that are on TV?’
King has previously marveled about the hot topic of Che and the show, particularly when there are so many shows flooding the streaming market.
Araki – director of Smiley Face starring Anna Faris – pointed out there are some shows that have ‘Vikings who are drinking children’s blood,’ but ‘what everybody’s concerned about is a nonbinary stand-up comic in the present day.’