Jacob Fortune-Lloyd has been in many well-known period dramas, including Wolf Hall (2015) and Medici: The Magnificent Seven (2018).
The actor has played characters ranging from a Tudor gentleman to a priest in Renaissance Italy in these series.
While these characters made a mark, Fortune-work Lloyd’s as D.L. Townes, a gay man in The Queen’s Gambit (2020), is what he is now best known for.
Townes, who plays Fortune Lloyd’s role in the extremely popular chess-based historical drama, has a big section of the show’s Twitter community buzzing. GQ Magazine UK even called Townes’ plot a “low-key gay sex symbol” because of how much they adored him.
To prepare for his role as Townes, Fortune-Lloyd watched Rock Hudson
Fortune-Lloyd has appeared in several period dramas and says that he gets into character by listening to music and viewing period films. To obtain a better notion for playing Townes, the Wolf Hall actor looked to gay American actor Rock Hudson for inspiration.
During the filming of The Queen’s Gambit, USFC champion Bruce Pandolfini tutored Fortune-Lloyd and other cast members on set. He also served as a chess adviser to novelist Walter Tevis (the actual author of the novel The Queen’s Gambit). On the shoot, the actor picked up some chess skills and even beat the nine-year-old Beth Harmon avatar on chess.com.
The Queen’s Gambit’s Fortune-Lloyd Character
Fortune-Lloyd plays D.L. Townes in The Queen’s Gambit, a photographer, journalist, and chess player who competes against Beth Harmon in a local chess tournament in Kentucky. Harmon develops a crush on Townes, which many showgoers approve of. However, the hint that Townes might be gay sparked interest among viewers when a man named Roger appears to be nice to him.
Townes’ sexuality was never revealed, and viewers were left wondering if he was gay, bi, or even heterosexual. Fortune-Lloyd, on the other hand, claims to be certain that Townes and Roger are a couple, even though it was never stated.
“Townes is a gay man. When we see the lovely Tim Kalkhof, who played Roger, appear in his budgie smugglers, I think it’s unambiguous that they’re an item. For me, anyway.”
While Harmon is wounded because she believes Townes is deceiving her, she walks away from him, but Townes’ role in the story is not done. When he reappears, the two reconcile. Townes also aids in the formation of a team of advisors to assist Harmon in his victory.
Although Townes and Harmon’s relationship did not develop into a romantic one, Fortune-Lloyd discussed his assessment of Townes’ sentiments for Harmon. “[Their romantic relationship] does not occur for a variety of reasons, but I believe he is interested in her and will always be attracted to her.” What he truly desires is a close, platonic relationship.”