Danny Miller has said when his character in Emmerdale came out as gay, it helped to change stereotypes.
Miller, 30, told his I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here! campmates that when a new producer joined the ITV drama and asked if he would portray a gay man, it “made” his career.
He said: “There’s obviously gay characters in Soap, but in terms of against all stereotypes of a gay man, and it made me think that would be so good.
“At the time, 13 years ago, it wasn’t as kind of open and accepted at that time as it is now. I think part of it helped change some perceptions of it really.
“I’ve had loads of fan letters and stuff that have come through at work that said ‘you helped me come out’, ‘you helped me deal with my sexuality’ and stuff and you think… wow.”
In the episode, Miller was asked if he ever got any “stick” for playing a gay man and being straight.
He added: “People are always saying it to me when they meet me, they’ll go, instantly if it was a bloke ‘how do you kiss them men?’
“That’s exactly what we’re trying to stop, the stereotype of how do you do that?”
Gold-medallist diver Matty Lee added: “I would get that sort of bullying from just being a diver. Just because I wear little trunks.
“And it’s a shame because people should be who they want to be, whether it’s their profession, whether it’s their sexuality, their gender, their race… people should be able to do what they want to do.”
In the episode on Thursday night, ex-footballer David Ginola talked to his campmates about the mental effects of retiring from football.
He said: “It’s just knowing that the moments you leave on the football pitch, like scoring a goal and 50,000 people cheering you on, and sharing a dressing room, having a very healthy life from 18 years old to 35… you will not have them anymore.
“I remember the game in Barcelona, it was 110,000 [people in the crowd].
“Ten minutes before you’re sitting in the shower room, focus, it’s quiet… you hear the whistle from the referee, that means you have to get out of the dressing room.
“You have this emotion and this adrenalin you get knowing you will never get it anymore. Also, it’s your passion. I was dreaming about being a footballer. It seems to be I was born to be a footballer, not anything else.”
Talking in the Telegraph, Lee added: “The shelf life for athletes is extremely short…It’s scary to think I haven’t got that long left in my diving world.”
Also in the episode, the contestants had to team up in the castle coin challenge and answer school questions while they were showered with critters, winning a trip to the Castle Inn.
Later in the show, Ginola and Miller took on the trial Bridge Over Troubled Water, transporting wine on their heads from a barrel over a drawbridge to a bowl.
Co-hosts Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly chanted “Ginola, Ginola” as the former footballer struggled in the challenge, before the pair secured seven stars to win pub grub at the Castle Inn.
The celebrities were greeted by peanuts, crisps, pizza and chips in the Castle Inn.
Miller said: “Once we got there, we sat down, I think everyone just turned feral. It was disgusting to watch, but beautiful at the same time.”
Broadcaster Louise Minchin added: “There were people eating ketchup with their fingers by the end, which I don’t think they’d do in normal circumstances. But these are not normal circumstances.”
Hidden in the tree were Ginola and actor Adam Woodyatt’s letters from home, which they had narrowly missed out on in previous challenges.
Ginola’s girlfriend Maeva Denat called him a “superhuman”, before adding: “There is a big void at home without you.”
Taking on the karaoke, Ginola sang For Me… Formidable, while actor Simon Gregson belted out Hotel California and the group sang a rendition of Queen’s Don’t Stop Me Now.
Ginola added: “Tonight is a night to remember.”