What We Know About Jesse Williams' Nude Photo Leak

Jesse Williams, a relatively well-known actor with roles in "Grey's Anatomy" and "The Cabin in the Woods" under his belt, has found himself trending on social media for all the wrong reasons. As Us Weekly notes, Williams was just nominated for a Tony alongside his co-stars Jesse Tyler Ferguson (of "Modern Family" fame) and Michael Oberholtzer for their roles in the gay baseball drama "Take Me Out." The critically lauded production was also nominated for best revival of a play.  

The role marks Williams' Broadway debut and, as host Andy Cohen noted during an interview on "Watch What Happens Live," it's pretty noteworthy that the actor's first theater role involves full-frontal nudity. "Does the audience react to the nudity on stage," Cohen asked, to which Williams acknowledged that hearing nothing is just as scary as an actual response. Regardless, the actor admitted, "I'm told it's quite insane, but it's a first so I have nothing to compare it to, and I won't be scared of anything after this." 

The "Grey's Anatomy" star who's worth a significant amount certainly got a massive reaction online, however, after footage from his nude scene leaked, much to the delight of some fans. Williams' pals in the industry, on the other hand, were less than impressed with the move. 

Some fans online were delighted to see Jesse Williams naked

The Sun reports a fan secretly recorded a video of Jesse Williams performing nude onstage in "Take Me Out" and shared the footage online. Doing so revealed his anatomy in all its glory as Williams was showering during the scene in question. Many fans hoped the actor would take the opportunity to create an OnlyFans account (via Twitter). Several were just happy to see the lusted-after star naked. "To whoever leaked Jesse Williams's d*** pics: Thank you for doing the Lord's work and I wish you a bountiful harvest this season," one fan tweeted.

Not everyone is so enthused, though. The Actors' Equity Association condemned the leak in a strongly-worded statement posted to their website. President Kate Shindle noted, "As actors, we regularly agree to be vulnerable onstage in order to tell difficult and challenging stories. This does not mean that we agree to have those vulnerable moments widely shared by anyone who feels like sneaking a recording device into the theater." 

She also made it clear that Williams did not give his consent to the recording, making this a major breach of privacy as well as general theater rules. 

The actor's peers strongly condemned the leak as a breach of privacy

Second Stage Theater, the company behind "Take Me Out," also posted a statement reiterating its "phone-free" policy to Instagram. Jesse Williams' co-star, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, re-shared it on Twitter. "I'm appalled by the disrespect shown to the actors of our company whose vulnerability on stage ever[y] night is crucial to 'Take Me Out,'" he wrote. "Anyone who applauds or trivializes this behavior has no place in the theater which has always been a safe space for artists & audience members." 

Ferguson also pointed out that the nudity is a very minor part of the story, so anybody rushing to the theater for it is going to be sorely disappointed. Although he downplayed the moment on "Watch What Happens Live," Williams admitted to Page Six that he was "terrified" of being onstage in the nip. "But then I noted that that was what I asked God for. I asked to be terrified," he said. "I asked to do something that was scary and challenging and made me earn it and made me feel alive and not comfortable."