— -- Last month, "Andi Mack" became the first series on The Disney Channel to depict a character coming out as gay, when Joshua Rush's character, Cyrus, told his friend Buffy, played by Sofia Wylie, that he had feelings for a male classmate.
Buffy, a representative for Disney said last month, "makes for positive role models for kid and adult viewers."
In a new interview, Rush said that he hopes that the moment helps give viewers a sense of self-confidence.
"I hope people, out of Cyrus' storyline, got this feeling like, you can be who you are," he said. "If there's something you're thinking about, you should talk about it."
The episode, the first of season 2, was screened in advance for organizations such as Common Sense Media, GLAAD and PFLAG, and according to Disney, had ratings that surged over the series launch this past April. Actress Lauren Tom, who plays Andi Mack's grandmother in the series, hopes that it helps create opportunities for families to have open conversations with each other.
"It's beautiful when issues that are difficult to talk about in real life, you can see play out on screen in such a wonderful example like, 'Oh, this is how you do it!'" she said. "Sometimes it's hard to imagine something you've never done before."
Her onscreen husband, played by Stoney Westmoreland, agreed.
"We live in a world where hopefully the younger generation, and hopefully the show, can help people be less afraid of being who they are," he said.
Disney is the parent company of ABC News.