It is a choice. With the changing dynamics of the socio-political structure of many countries across the world, we have seen more and more celebrities taking the lead and “coming out” on their personal lives, coming out in the open to make aware of their sexuality. This list brings to you the actresses, or celebrities as they are known, who came out as lesbians or bisexuals in their orientation and also openly advocate the LGBTQ cause, for they have been on the receiving side so far.
These actresses are known for their power-packed performances, or their celebrity statuses and have inspired a plethora of audiences and fans alike. Many of them, despite their belonging to conservative households or belonging to restrictive communities, have mustered up enough courage to talk about the trivialities of the LGBTQ community and have bolstered for their acceptance, for having equal rights like any other human being – the right to choose, the right to take a stance, and the right to be free. Though many of these actresses have not openly admitted being lesbians, they have candidly expressed their orientations in one or the other TV talks or interviews. Here goes the list of top 12 most famous lesbians.
12. Kate McKinnon
Primarily known for comic roles and for doing celebrity impressions with an inexplicable ease, Kate McKinnon is known for her voiceover stints in movies like ‘Finding Dory (2016)’, ‘The Angry Birds Movie (2016)’, ‘Leap! (2017)’, ‘Ferdinand (2017)’ to name a few. She has also starred in many supporting roles in movies like ‘Life Partners (2014)’, ‘Staten Island Summer (2015)’, etc. McKinnon is also the recipient of multiple Primetime Emmy Awards for her role in ‘Saturday Night Live’ for being an “Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series”. Her impressions of various celebrities are a sensation and her appearances in TV shows like ‘The Big Gay Sketch Show’ – an LGBT themed sketch comedy are well known. When she was cast for SNL, she was touted to be the first open lesbian cast member of the show. Also, in an interview she has been quoted to be saying that she’d rate herself as a “98.5% Les”. Kate McKinnon is currently dating Jackie Abbott, as was evident from their 2017 appearance at the Emmy’s.
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11. Cara Delevingne
The model turned celebrity shot to fame after the British Fashion Awards of 2012 when she partnered with many international luxury fashion houses. After her cameo appearance in ‘Anna Karenina (2012)’, Cara went on to play Margo in ‘Paper Towns’, her first big break from an outstanding modelling career. Delevingne’s performance as the Enchantress in ‘Suicide Squad (2016)’ was well received. Admittedly, she calls herself a “Genderfluid” and has been in a relationship with American singer St. Vincent for quite sometime. Cara’s vocality on the openness of one’s sexual orientations is well known.
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10. Amanda Bearse
The seasoned actress, and director Amanda Bearse is known for her role as Marcy D’arcy in the television series ‘Married… with Children (1987-1997)’. The live-action sitcom was one of her biggest Hollywood breaks, following which she also appeared in many other TV soaps, ‘The Doom Generation (1995)’, and ‘Fright Night (1985)’. Amanda Bearse came out as a lesbian in 1993, and has been in a relationship with Carrie Schenken since 2010 with an adopted daughter.
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9. Lily Tomlin
The show-stealer stand-up comedian of the ’60s, a Grammy-award winning singer during the ’70s and currently active in Netflix’s ‘Grace & Frankie (2015-2018)’, the recipient of the prestigious BAFTA and Screen Actors Guild awards, Lily Tomlin needs no entrance. The multi-talented artist has been known for her character roles and for her monologues and parodies, which have garnered her with a lot of acclaim and fan-following. Her sexuality was rather apparent since 1971 when she was in a relationship with Jane Wagner – also the content writer and producer of Tomlin’s comic pieces. She married Wagner in 2013.
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8. Jane Lynch
The ‘Glee’ actress, who is also known for her voiceover roles in many animated movies such as ‘Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (2009)’, ‘Wreck-It Ralph (2012)’ has come a long way in Hollywood, with a decorated career spanning three decades. The recipient of Primetime Emmy Award, Golden Globe Award, People’s Choice Award among others for her role as Sue Sylvester in the television series ‘Glee (2009-2015)’, Lynch has also acted in many mainstream comedy films such as ‘The 40-Year-Old Virgin (2005)’, and has appeared in popular sitcoms like ‘Friends (1994-2004)’, ‘Two and a Half Men (2004-2014)’ etc. for which she also received several award nominations. Jane Lynch married Lara Embry, a psychologist in 2010.
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7. Michelle Rodriguez
The action-film superstar known for her tough looks and her ‘Girlfight’ demeanour, Michelle Rodriguez has risen to be known as one of the most prominent leading actresses of the action-film genre. Cliched, as some may call it, most of her roles have been more versatile than ever, ranging from ‘Avatar’ to ‘Fast and the Furious’ franchise, and we have seen her play multiverse roles with ease. She has dated celebrities like Zac Efron, Vin Diesel et al, but most notably, she has also dated Cara Delevingne for a short period of time. Rodriguez has gone on the record to admit that she has a bisexual orientation and that there’s “nothing wrong” in being one. Word, Michelle!
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6. Kristen Stewart
Starting young, Kristen Stewart has broken many-a-ceilings when it came to performances. Though she might have received a lot of flak for being “monotonous”, yet I think she’s out of the league and doesn’t fall into the roll-call of mainstream Hollywood celebrities. Starting her diverse career with ‘The Safety of Objects’ and ‘Panic Room’, with Jodie Foster in the latter, until critically acclaimed ‘Clouds of Sils Maria (2014)’ alongside Juliette Binoche, she has worked with many stalwarts compared to her colleagues of the same age. The ‘Twilight’ girl has tried to keep her personal life under the wraps, though she has described herself as “gay” and bisexual in many interviews. She’s been dating Victoria’s Secret model Stella Maxwell for quite some time now.
5. Ellen Page
Canadian hottie and teenage sensation Ellen Page came to the limelight after ‘Juno (2007)’, a movie which deals with teenage pregnancy, and her appearance as Kitty in X-Men series was her ticket to mainstream cinema. Movies like ‘Super (2010)’ and ‘Inception (2010)’ followed, along with her appearance for a video game called ‘Beyond: Two Souls (2013)’ which established Page as a rising star in Hollywood. She is a staunch feminist and came out as gay in 2014. Ellen Page is married to Emma Portner, a Canadian dancer.
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4. Rosie O’Donnell
A renowned LGBT activist and blogger, Rosie O’Donnell has been omnipresent in television space and blogging since more than the past three decades. Having successfully run many talk shows, primetime television shows and authored a couple of memoirs, O’Donnell has also ventured into mainstream cinema and appeared across many popular TV series, most notably ‘Empire’, ‘Mom’, and the recent addition, ‘SMILF’. And there’s no count of the number of Daytime Emmy Awards she’s won for being an “Outstanding Talk Show Host” – the exact number being 11. While ridiculing people’s judgements on making a big deal about someone being “gay”, she announced that she’s a dyke and slammed all those who opposed the notion of being open about their sexuality. Well, no one could’ve done it any better.
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3. Fiona Shaw
We all know her by the name of Petunia Dursley, Harry Potter’s evil aunt who prefers her own child over her sister’s. Notably, Fiona Shaw has given a number of theatre appearances and won numerous accolades in the theatre space than compared to the mainstream cinema. Shaw also played Marnie Stonebrook in HBO’s ‘True Blood (2008-2014)’, along with her cameo and supporting appearances in numerous major films and TV shows. Although Shaw maintains a very close personal life, she had split from her husband and came out as gay back in 2005. She’s currently rumoured to be with Saffron Burrows.
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2. Jodie Foster
Two-time Academy Award winner, a three-time BAFTA and Golden Globe winner and considered one of the greatest actresses of the millennium, Jodie Foster is a walking legend. The actress turned director is also known for her directorial TV episodes of ‘Orange is the New Black’ and ‘Black Mirror’ which have gained a cult status worldwide. Foster’s coming out as a lesbian might have rattled many of the homophobic out there, but the mother of two considers herself a closeted lesbian and “values her privacy” over anything else. After dating Alex Hedison for a year, they got married in 2014.
1. Ellen DeGeneres
More than an actress, Ellen DeGeneres is perhaps the most popular female celebrity in the world after Oprah Winfrey. Be that as it may, although her film career has been mostly limited to voiceovers in animated flicks like ‘Finding Nemo (2003)’, ‘Finding Dory (2016)’, to name a few, she has pretty much conquered the television space all by herself, starting with ‘The Ellen Show’ in 2001 to hosting umpteen number of award shows like Primetime Emmy Awards, Grammy Awards, and also the Academy Awards. She came out as a lesbian in 1997 while ‘Ellen’ was on air and has been vocal on LGBT issues since long. Ellen DeGeneres is currently married to Portia De Rossi, an Australian model. Interestingly, DeGeneres dated Alex Hedison and they were in a relationship for four years prior to the latter’s wedding to Jodie Foster.
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