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LGBT film and television stars making a stand for change

Have any actors or television celebrities helped you in your journey? Have you been inspired by their example? Be sure to let us know, and let us all be inspired by your story.

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The LGBT community has seen a rise in film and television stars coming out as gay or bisexual in recent years, no longer hiding behind their ‘straight’ persona when in the public spotlight. No longer a taboo, or too much of a hindrance in getting TV and movie roles, actors as recent as Colton Haynes and Lee Pace have spoken out on the importance of living openly. Celebrities creating a conversation about sexuality is helpful to all of us in the LGBT community, especially for those people still afraid to speak out. When big-name celebs have the courage to step forward, it opens the way for a more accommodating wave of public understanding.

In this article, we will take a look at three of the film and television actors currently using their celebrity status to raise LGBT awareness in the public consciousness.

Ellen Page

Celebrated Canadian actress Ellen Page, star of such hit movies as Juno and Hard Candy, publicly came out as gay in 2014. However, she was outed several years before then by director Brett Ratner, in what recently became a very public case spread across the tabloids. Page made headlines again in 2015 when she confronted US Senator Ted Cruz for failing to protect the LGBT community’s employment rights in the face of prejudice, and she continues to make a stand for gay rights, especially for young people afraid to come out. Using her own experiences, she said at a Human Rights Event in 2014, that she is here to “make a difference to help others have an easier and more hopeful time.” She has continued to do this in the public arena, offering hope to many teens still struggling to be accepted for their sexuality.

Neil Patrick Harris

From the youngest ever television doctor Doogie Howser to recent acclaim as Count Olaf in  Netflix’s Lemony Snicket saga from the books by Daniel Handler, Harris is one of our most celebrated LGBT icons. One of the first mainstream actors to come out (in 2006), Harris continues to buck the trend on our screens, portraying both straight and gay men in his chosen roles. He was also the first openly proclaimed gay man to host the Oscars. Despite his busy Hollywood lifestyle, he still spends an inordinate amount of time raising money for causes benefiting those in the LGBT community. These include the Elton John AIDS Foundation and the Live Out Loud non-profit organization which inspires and empowers LGBT youth.

Drew Barrymore

Former child star Barrymore came out as bisexual in 2003 and is loved the world over, not only for her incredible range of film and television roles (from ET to Santa Clarita Diet) but also for her commitment to helping the LGBT community. She has been awarded for raising awareness in her gay film roles (including Everybody’s Fine), hosted the GLAAD Media awards and has publicly fought for same-sex marriage by joining thousands of protestors on the streets of West Hollywood. Long may she continue marching, on screen and off.

Have any actors or television celebrities helped you in your journey? Have you been inspired by their example? Be sure to let us know, and let us all be inspired by your story.

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