Tan France is a queer icon, but he still hasn't gotten used to that title yet. He and the Queer Eye Fab Five shot to stardom when their Netflix reboot of TLC's Queer Eye For The Straight Guy aired in February 2018. Since then, the show has aired two more seasons (with Season 4 right around the corner), they've won Emmys, and most recently, they all appeared as part of the cast of Taylor Swift's "You Need To Calm Down" music video. The video featured a litany of queer celebs, and Tan France's story about filming Taylor Swift's "You Need To Calm Down" music video shows that he just can't calm down about the fact that this amazingly queer video happened.
France tells Elite Daily that he and the other Fab Five members didn't see the video before its release. And not only did they not see the video, but they also had no idea who else was going to be in it. (Laverne Cox, Todrick Hall, and Ellen DeGeneres are just a few of the 29 celebrity cameos.) Apparently, Swift kept the cameos compartmentalized when filming as a means of keeping everything under wraps.
"We actually didn’t know what it was at all," France says. "We didn’t know who else was going to be in the video. Everything was so top-secret. We were just honored because she asked."
"We watched it when everybody else did," he continues, "I screamed when I saw my part. I was so happy with it."
France explains that he wasn't in the Fab Five tea party section of the video due to his filming schedule for his upcoming Netflix show, Next in Fashion.
That's how his pouring the tea moment came to fruition. (He appears at the 1:38 mark.)
While the video has been both lauded for its LGBTQ+ representation and criticized for Swift seemingly conflating her "haters" with the dangerous homophobic threats the queer community gets daily, France seems to be entirely happy about how it turned out and his involvement.
Because, at surface level, the video is joyous and inclusive, and those will never be inherently bad things. France is blown away that he was asked to be part of it.
He says he filmed the Next in Fashion finale the same day the rest of the Fab Five filmed their cameo, then the next day, he filmed his in front of a green screen on set.
"I was so sad to not be there," he says. "I love the message of it, and it’s something I’ll look back on in 20 years and think, 'Can you bloody believe I was in that? That’s insane.'"
"You Need To Calm Down" is part of Swift's upcoming album,Lover, dropping Aug. 23.
As for France, you can catch him next in Queer Eye Season 4 starting July 19. Netflix has yet to announce when Next in Fashion will drop, but according to France, the first season has already been completed, so keep those eyes peeled.