Acting always seems so easy, especially for people who have never stepped onto the stage, let alone bring life to a character that someone else imagined and put in a script. The celebrity actors we have today are so good at what they do because they become the characters they are portraying – so much so that the audience seldom realizes that these people on TV are actually acting.
We, the audience, never really think of the challenges that the actors we love to critique so much have to go through every time they are on set. Most of us just think of how better it would have been if they did some things in a different way.
Many actors have to get into very uncomfortable situations that may be contrary to their beliefs – situations that they cannot get out of because they signed up for the job. For example, not all actors are fine with nudity, sexually suggestive scenes, cursing, or even violence, but when the script demands they do what is uncomfortable for them, they have little choice but to do it.
This article is about actors who in real life are gay, but more often than not, they take on straight roles. Whether or not these actors are uncomfortable acting straight roles or not seems not to be an issue with them, because they do their job so well. Here are 15 actors that most people have never had reason to believe are gay because they assume the roles they play are exactly who they are in real life.
15. Jonathan D. Bennett
Most people remember Jonathan Bennett from his role as Aaron Samuels in Mean Girls, a 2004 comedy movie. Bennett’s recurring roles in UPN’s Veronica Mars and in ABC’s All My Children keep him fresh in our minds. Jonathan Bennett is one of those actors that most people will be shocked to find on this list because he has never really officially come out of the closet. The reason he is here is that the news about him in the media is that he is gay, and apparently Julianne Hough (Dancing With The Stars judge) opened up to Mario Lopez in 2014 telling him that Jonathan was gay.
14. Zachary Quinto
Fans of the Science fiction TV drama Heroes are very familiar with Zachary Quinto, although they know him by the name of the character he portrays – Gabriel Gray or Sylar. In Heroes, Sylar is the primary villain, whose mission is to steal powers from other super humans through killing them. Zachary’s role in Heroes gave him a spot on TV Guide’s list of “The Nastiest Villains of All Time” in 2013. Zachary has also played numerous other roles in movies including Star Trek and American Horror Story: Asylum. Believe it or not, Zachary is gay, and has been with his partner Miles McMillan since 2013.
13. Matt Bomer
Matthew Staton Bomer was born in 1977 and began his TV acting career in 2001. Matt gained popularity through his recurring roles in Chuck, as Bryce Larkin, but people know him more from the role he played in White Collar, of a con-artist called Neal Caffrey from 2009 to 2014. Bomer has also acted in movies such as Fightplan, In Time, Magic Mike, and Winter’s Tale. Bomer is a great actor, and he has won several awards, including a People’s Choice Award and a Golden Globe Award for White Collar and The Normal Heart respectively. You might have figured it by now that Matt Bomer is gay. He has been with his partner Simon Halls since 2011, and they have three children.
12. George Takei
Fans of Star Trek are very familiar with George Takei, although they know him better as Hikaru Sulu. George Takei is almost 80 years old now and has been acting longer than most of the other actors on this list have been alive. Takei was part of the Star Trek TV series, part of six Star Trek films, and in Star Trek: Voyager, so if anyone has a question about Star Trek, George Takei has the answer. Anyone who knows more about George Takei especially when he is not acting knows that he is an LGBT rights activist. Therefore, it would not be a surprise discovering that George Takei is gay and he has been with his partner Brad Altman Takei since 2008.
11. Jonathan Groff
Jonathan Groff is an amazing singer and actor, and he has participated in numerous Broadway productions and in musicals. Fans of Glee know him better as Jesse St. James and those who are very familiar with his voice recognized him in the hit animation movie Frozen, voicing the character Kristoff. In Glee, Jonathan’s role of Jesse St. James used to play the love interest of Lea Michelle’s Rachel Berry. Towards the end of the sixth season, Lea Michelle and Jesse St. James get married. Jonathan Groff is gay and he came out in October of 2009 but is currently not in a relationship that he has gone public with.
10. Theodore Raymond Knight
People who love watching medical drama series know T.R. Knight very well, although they might only know him as Dr. George O’Malley, a character in Grey’s Anatomy. T.R Knight started acting at the age of five, and has starred in numerous theater productions in Minnesota, on Broadway, and even off-Broadway. T.R. Knight has also been involved in a few films, some including The Last Request, 42, A Year and Change, and this year’s Hello Again. Theodore is a very talented actor, and just like all the other men on this list, he is gay. Theodore has been married to his partner Patrick Leahy since 2013.
9. Ian McKellen
Sir Ian McKellen is one of the oldest men on this list, and he has had a very successful acting career. He has been nominated for numerous awards, and won quite a number, with some of the most prominent ones being six Laurence Olivier Awards, four Drama Desk Awards, two Critics’ Choice Awards, two Saturn Awards, a Golden Globe Award, a Tony Award, a BIF Award, and a Screen Actors Guild Award. Most people know Sir Ian McKellen from his roles as Gandalf in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, as well as Magneto in X-Men. Sir Ian McKellen is gay and has been a vocal activist for LGTB rights.
8. Ricky Martin
Enrique Martin Morales is most commonly referred to as Ricky Martin, a famous Puerto Rican singer and actor. Ricky Martin might be more of a singer than an actor, but that does not exclude him from appearing on this list. Some of the roles he has played on TV include his appearance in Glee as David Martinez and he was the voice behind Herb Overkill in Minions in the Latin American dub. Although he was once in a relationship with and contemplated getting married to Rebecca de Alba, a Mexican TV host, he has come out as gay. He acknowledged his sexual orientation through his website and he is currently in a relationship with Jwan Yosef, a Syrian-Swedish painter.
7. Alan Cumming
Alan Cumming has been part of numerous plays, TV shows, and films. Most people can recognize Cumming from the roles he played in GoldenEye, X-Men United, and the Spy Kids trilogy. Alan Cumming has been nominated for and won numerous awards, making him a very successful actor in present times. Cumming has been in several relationships over his adult life, some of them being an eight-year marriage to Hilary Lyon, a relationship with Saffron Burrows that lasted two years, a relationship with Nick Philippou that lasted six years, and is now married to Grant Shaffer. Cumming is gay and has been vocal with regard to LGBT rights.
6. Victor Garber
Victor Garber has had a very successful acting career, which he began in 1958. Victor has played numerous roles over the years, with the most popular ones being in Assassins as John Wilkes Booth, in the series Alias as Jack Bristow, in Titanic as Thomas Andrews, and currently in The Flash as Dr Martin Stein. People who only know him as an actor would be shocked to realize that he is actually gay in real life, because his roles never lead the audience to think along those lines. Victor has been with his partner Rainer Andreesen for many years, and they tied the knot in 2015.
5. Neil Patrick Harris
Neil Patrick Harris is a magician, a singer, an actor, and even a TV host, but most people know him as a comedian. In How I met your Mother, one of the most successful TV comedy series in recent times, Neil Patrick Harris plays the role of Barney Stinson. Barney Stinson is a character who loves wearing expensive suits, drinking alcohol, playing laser tag, using catchphrases, and women. Throughout the series, Barney got into several serious relationships, got married, divorced, and even had a child. Neil Patrick’s portrayal of Barney Stinson and many other characters in movies such as Harold & Kumar, Starship Troopers, and Gone Girl give the audience no clue as to the fact that he is gay. He has been married to his partner David Burtka since 2014 and they have two children.
4. Jim Parsons
Jim Parsons, otherwise known as James Joseph Parsons, plays the role of Sheldon Cooper, a character in The Big Bang Theory, an American sitcom that has been running since 2007. Sheldon Cooper is a theoretical physicist with a genius IQ but lacks social skills, a sense of humor, recognition of sarcasm, humility, and empathy. Jim Parson’s character has consistently proven to be one of the funniest in the sitcom and is undeniably the breakout character of the show. In The Big Bang Theory, Parson’s character has had a girlfriend called Amy Farrah Fowler. Because of this relationship with Amy, although awkward at times, the audience would never think that Parsons is Gay. Parsons has been with his partner Todd Spiewak since 2002.
3. Russell Tovey
Russell Tovey needs no introduction, owing to his numerous Film, stage, and TV appearances. Most people can recognize him from BBC’s Being Human, as a werewolf called George Sands. Russell has also been in other TV series productions including Him & Her, Looking, and Sherlock. Russell officially came out of the closet when he was 18 years, and this resulted in a falling out with his father. When Russell was growing up, being gay was especially hard because he did not have anyone to look up to. His parents were willing to treat his gayness with hormones before coming to terms with his sexual orientation.
2. Wentworth Miller
When you think about Prison Break, you have to think about Michael Scofield, who is a character played by Wentworth Miller. In addition to his other recurring roles in The Flash and in Legends of Tomorrow, Wentworth Miller will come back again as Michael Scofield in the return of Prison Break, a series that most people are anxiously waiting for. Although Miller had denied being gay in 2007, he came out in August 2013 through a letter he wrote declining to go to Russia owing to its ban on non-traditional sexual relations. Miller is very private when it comes to his personal life, so we are yet to confirm who he is in a relationship with.
1. Guillermo Diaz
Guillermo Diaz is an amazing actor who most people know as Huck in the hit ABC Drama TV series Scandal. Guillermo Diaz plays the role of an extremely loyal and highly skilled tech guy who loves to inflict pain on Olivia’s enemies or anyone that stands in their way, a role that he executes flawlessly every time. Guillermo Diaz has been in other movies and TV shows, including 200 Cigarettes, Law & Order, ER, and many others. Guillermo Diaz is gay, and he claimed that his struggle to hide who he was contributed to making him the great actor he is today.