Billy Eichner Slams Supreme Court 'Homophobes' at MTV VMAs While Celebrating His Gay Rom-Com 'Bros'

Billy Eichner told fans to go see Bros next month because "we need to show … all the homophobes on the Supreme Court that we want gay love stories"

Billy Eichner speaks onstage at the 2022 MTV VMAs at Prudential Center on August 28, 2022 in Newark, New Jersey.
Photo: Theo Wargo/Getty

Billy Eichner got political while on stage at last night's MTV Video Music Awards.

Before introducing Panic at the Disco Sunday, the comedian/actor, 43, mentioned his upcoming rom-com Bros and called out Justice Clarence Thomas and others on the Supreme Court as "homophobes."

"Bros is making history as the first gay rom-com ever made by a major studio, and the first where every role is played by an openly LGBTQ actor," Eichner began. "And I need you all there in theaters on September 30, 'cause we need to show all the homophobes like Clarence Thomas and all the homophobes on the Supreme Court that we want gay love stories and we support LGBTQ people and we are not letting them drag us back into the last century because they are past, and Bros is the future."

As the audience cheered, he then segued into an intro for singer Brendon Urie and his performance, jokingly saying: "And speaking of sinners…."

In June, Justice Thomas' opinion in the overturning of Roe v. Wade suggested other landmark rulings — including those that protect contraception, same-sex relationships and same-sex marriage — could be in peril.

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Thomas wrote, in a concurring opinion excerpted on Twitter, that the Supreme Court should reconsider Griswold v. Connecticut, Lawrence v. Texas, and Obergefell v. Hodge — the rulings that currently protect the right to buy and use contraceptives without government restriction, the right to a same-sex relationship, and the right to same-sex marriage.

The Billy on the Street star spoke to PEOPLE on the red carpet earlier in the evening about his new film.

"We're trying to step it up and make a historic movie," he said. "Yes, it's about representation, but we wanted to make a hilarious, smart movie for everyone — straight people, gay people, queer people. A great romantic comedy, and it's a really, really funny movie. I'm so excited for people to see it."

2022 MTV Video Music Awards - Arrivals
Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty

Eichner cited Moonstruck, Working Girl, Broadcast News, When Harry Met Sally as among the rom-coms he "grew up with," but added "there were no gay people in them."

"That's what we try to do with Bros, is make a movie that's smart, that's funny, that happens to be about LGBTQ folks. We really have so rarely gotten that — I don't know that we've ever gotten it. And with real production values; we shot in New York City with a real budget. The movie looks gorgeous. So that's what we were trying to do."

He continued, "There were some great indie movies that I loved — like Trick and All Over the Guy. We have to remember those movies and know that those guys really worked hard to get those made. And Bros is the next step."

Bros world premiere is scheduled for Sept. 8 at the 2022 Toronto International Film Festival, and it hits theaters everywhere Sept. 30.

Updated by
Jeff Nelson
Jeff Nelson is the Senior News Editor, Entertainment at PEOPLE. For nearly a decade, he has worked across the brand's entertainment verticals, reporting on breaking news and writing and editing across platforms, as well as securing A-list cover exclusives, including Barry Manilow's coming out and an at-home interview with Madonna. Jeff has appeared as an expert on Good Morning America, Extra, HLN and SiriusXM, as well as at RuPaul's DragCon as a moderator. He studied magazine journalism at Drake University, graduating with a B.A. in Journalism & Mass Communication.
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