Leslie Jordan, best known for his Emmy-winning role as Beverley Leslie, the rival of Megan Mullally’s character Karen on Will & Grace, has become an overnight quarantine star with the hilarious videos he is posting on Instagram during the coronavirus lockdown.
While quarantined in his hometown of Chattanooga, Tenn., Jordan has uploaded videos of himself baton twirling for exercise, singing Lizzo while impersonating Sia, eating breakfast while watching porn and agreeing to be America’s “honorary gay uncle.”
The stand out star of this whole awful situation is definitely Leslie Jordan. pic.twitter.com/kpNfpHq5L7
— Andrew (@andrewgvnn) April 10, 2020
His fan base has rapidly expanded from a little over 100,000 before the pandemic to now more than 3.1 million followers and growing.
“My sister was cute, she said, ‘Oh my gosh, you’re an overnight success,’” The 4-foot-11, 64-year-old character actor told the Washington Post newfound Instagram fame. “’Oh,’ I said, ‘this is the longest night.’ I’ve been at it since 1982.”
The 4-foot-11, 64-year-old actor explained that when working on the show “Cool Kids” in 2018, he was urged by execs to get on social media. “They told me, ‘You need to get on Instagram, it’s perfect for you.’ They set it up for me, and I did my first post.”
“I had this friend right when the pandemic hit, he said, ‘You know what, Leslie? Your thoughts are exactly what people need to hear right now. It’s not like wagging your finger or saying ‘Wear your mask’ or do this or do that. You’re just funny,” Jordan told TODAY. “And so we started coming up with all kinds of little ideas. Mainly I do it for the response of the people.”
“I’m in Tennessee,” he told the Post. “I live right in the heart of Hollywood and I had a feeling right when it hit to go home on family business anyway. I said, ‘I’m going to stay.’ I would much rather be hunkered down with my family. My mother is 94, I have an identical twin sister — it’s like a Tennessee Williams play. We’re all here. I took a little place nearby, an Airbnb nearby, because I thought, “I cannot, at 65, move back in with my mother.” So in the evenings I come over here.”
And the response has been massive. In just a few days, Jordan’s Instagram following has grown by millions of followers and many of his videos have been shared on Twitter by fans, amassing hundreds of thousands of more views there. His Instagram videos average about 2 million views.