But what impresses me the most about Mr. Marsden - is that he is not afraid to play gay characters. In fact, he's played several (The Heights, 24th Day...we're not going to count Enchanted). Most agents/actors are afraid they'll get typecast if they play gay roles, but James doesn't seem to mind. He did it before Heath & Jake did Brokeback. And did it hurt his career? He's been cast in The Notebook, Superman Returns, and Hairspray afterwards so the answer's probably no. I think he now even has a deal with Disney. I'd say he's doing pretty well.
Closeted gay actors have been playing straight roles for years so it's only fair that straight actors get to play gay ones. Some say that straight people taking gay roles just decreases the work available to those that are truly homosexual, but I think it's more important that A-list actors/actresses attract a wider audience to movies that get them to think about issues relating to the LGBT community. Look at what Sean Penn and James Franco are about to do with the Harvey Milk movie. If unknown gay actors were attached, would the same amount of people see it? Probably not. I'm actually glad these straight actors are tackling these roles and not caring what people might think about their sexuality. Isn't that a sign of a true actor?
For more insight into James Marsden, check out this great interview with him here.