Neal McDonough, a Christian actor in Hollywood, has steadfastly upheld his faith and family values throughout his 30-year career, even when it meant turning down roles and facing professional challenges.
Navigating the competitive landscape of Hollywood is a daunting task, and for Neal McDonough, being a Christian in the entertainment industry has made it even more challenging. Despite the hurdles, McDonough has remained unwavering in his commitment to his faith and family.
The fundamental choice between earthly desires and faith is a constant for Christians, and McDonough has exemplified this in his career decisions. From the outset, he set a boundary refusing to engage in intimate scenes on screen, a commitment he made to honor his marriage of 16 years.
“I won’t kiss any other woman because these lips are meant for one woman,” McDonough explained, highlighting his devotion to his wife and family.
This principled stance hasn’t always been met with understanding in Hollywood. When McDonough secured a role on the provocative show “Desperate Housewives,” he made it clear to the creator, Marc Cherry, that he wouldn’t participate in intimate scenes. Cherry, after a brief pause, accepted McDonough’s terms, leading to a positive working relationship.
However, not all experiences have been as accommodating. In 2010, McDonough was set to star in ABC’s TV series “Scoundrels,” but he was replaced three days into filming for refusing to perform steamy scenes with co-star Virginia Madsen. The decision cost him as much as $1 million and damaged his reputation in the industry.
Reflecting on the challenging period, McDonough stated, “It was a horrible situation for me. After that, I couldn’t get a job because everybody thought I was this religious zealot. I am very religious. I put God and family first, and me second. That’s what I live by. It was hard for a few years.”
Despite the setbacks, McDonough and his family relied on their faith, enduring the storm with trust in God’s plan. He expressed gratitude for his wife, Ruvé, acknowledging that without her, he wouldn’t be where he is today.
“Almost 20 years, five kids, and just one heck of an awesome life later, to have her as my partner in everything, I’m just the most blessed guy I know,” McDonough shared.
While the challenges were significant, McDonough’s career rebounded, and he humorously refers to himself as “Just Famous Enough.” His commitment to faith and family has defined his journey, making him a testament to staying true to one’s values in the often-compromising world of Hollywood.