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Billy Porter Shares the "Beautiful" Thing He Learned About Cinderella Co-Star Camila Cabello

In an exclusive chat, Billy Porter told E! News what he learned about Camila Cabello from working with her on Cinderella. He also spoke about teaming up with H&M to support The Trevor Project.

By Alli Rosenbloom, Elyse Dupre Dec 01, 2020 2:00 PMTags
Watch: Billy Porter Praises "Pose" for Portraying LGBT Families

Cinderella once said, "A dream is a wish your heart makes." Now, Billy Porter is living out his dream by playing the Fairy Godmother in Sony's remake of Cinderella.

"First of all, I'm playing the Whitney Houston part," he said with a scream during an exclusive interview with E! News. "You have to write he screams and shakes his head and screams, OK?" 

Porter's performance comes more than two decades after the late Houston played the Fairy Godmother in the 1997 version of Cinderella, one of several adaptations to hit the screen over the years.

"I don't fangirl about a lot of things," the Pose star continued, "but Whitney Houston was one of them."

And while Porter couldn't reveal too much about the new film, he did say it has a "remarkable script."

"In the modern day and age, a lot of our old stories and tales are problematic, we find, especially when it comes to women and how women are treated and how women are perceived and how women are, you know, presented," he added. "This new version takes all of that into account and it is the most empowering version of a Cinderella story that you could ever imagine. And that's all I can say."

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The Emmy winner isn't the only big name involved in the project. Kay Cannon directed and wrote the movie while James Corden served as one of the producers. Camila Cabello also played the leading role of Cinderella.   

During the interview, Porter was asked what he learned about the 23-year-old singer from working with her and if there was anything that surprised him.

"I won't say surprised me, I was just really taken aback by how sweet she is, how present she is, how grounded she is," he explained. "She's a really grounded young lady who understands her position in her influence. And that's really hard to do at her age. I wouldn't know what to do. I'm coming into fame as a 50-year-old person on the planet and it's crazy."

Watch: Camila Cabello Loves Being a Role Model to Kids

He then reflected on what it must be like to live in the limelight at Cabello's age. "You know, my compassion and my empathy for children, or young people who are in this position, has grown exponentially," the actor continued. "My empathy for that, my compassion for that has grown exponentially since it has happened to me as a grown-ass man. I can't imagine, I can't imagine. The way that she handled it and carries herself is a really beautiful thing to see."

In addition to working on Cinderella, Porter recently purchased a new home with his husband Adam Smith. He also teamed up with H&M to support The Trevor Project, which is the world's largest suicide prevention and crisis intervention organization for LGBTQ young people. As part of Giving Tuesday on Dec. 1, H&M is participating in a match campaign to support The Trevor Project. Starting Nov. 30, donors can visit TheTrevorProject.org, where H&M will match all donations up to $250,000.

"I think that especially this year, and especially in the moment that we're in, we need to remind ourselves and each other of our own inherent humanity, which extends and creates empathy, which allows for civilizations to heal and to function," Porter told E! News. "We are in a lot of dysfunction. Giving Tuesday to me represents function, represents a space and a step towards a functioning society again."

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