For all the wrong reasons, a famous actor coming out as gay has been in the forefront of news in the last couple of weeks. Kevin Spacey‘s recent news, while acting as a smokescreen to distract people from the real news at hand, the allegations that he pushed himself on a young boy, actor Michael Rapp, brings up an interesting topic. Many people have suspected that Spacey was gay long before he shared it with the world. But guessing about an actor’s s*xual preference is a tricky game to play. Unless the person acknowledges it himself, it can be almost impossible to know for sure. It can also be invasive. So, we decided to take a look at some of the stars who have already come out of the closet. But since we’re not looking at just any stars–we’re looking at former child stars–you might not have heard this news.
Now, you might be thinking, who cares? Well, lots of people do. Wanting to know more about the personal lives of celebrities has been a public fascination since the concept of celebrity was first created. These people are idolized and obsessed over. If people care about what a celebrity eats for breakfast, you can be damn sure that people will care about who they sleep with at night. For that reason, we wanted to fill in some gaps of knowledge for you. There is a lot of celebrity news that goes undetected by the average bear, especially when the celebrity is a former star. We lose touch. The picture gets out of focus. Maybe you stopped getting news about a star you once loved and aren’t familiar with who they are these days. This is a particularly common occurrence for child stars who have left the spotlight or stopped doing high-profile work. It’s possible that an actor you used to know well has made some important life changes. Here are 15 Child Stars You Never Knew Came Out of the Closet.
15. Blake McIver
Blake McIver is the little guy who played Derek on Full House. He also played Waldo in The Little Rascals. Now, McIver being gay is not news necessarily, but maybe you haven’t kept up with the former child star. His motivating story was almost tragic, thanks to bullies. McIver recalls, “When I was 14, I came very close to becoming a gay teen suicide ‘statistic,’ but I then turned to music, my piano, my loved ones, and discovered that it does in fact get better. But that being said, I believe we must raise awareness to protect the LGBT teens who are still being physically and verbally assaulted and fear for their lives every day. We also have a responsibility to end this suicide epidemic.”
Of all the former child stars on this list, Raven-Symone might be the most well-known, at least in terms of her private life. Ironically, though, Raven has been hesitant to put any labels on herself and tries to keep her private life private. It’s been her wishy-washy stance that has put her private life under the microscope even more. In the past, Raven has said that she doesn’t want to be called “gay.” She’s said, instead, that she is a “human who loves humans.” She had, more recently, called herself a lesbian, so we’re not sure what to call her now. That being said, Raven has said that she doesn’t consider herself an African-American either. Her three-year-long relationship with “AzMarie” Livingston, a relationship that ended not long ago, seems to put her in the gay category, but don’t tell her we called her that.
13. Danny Pintauro
It’s been 20 years since Danny Pintauro, the actor who played the son, Jonathan, on Who’s the Boss? and Tad from Cujo came out, but maybe you didn’t get the memo yet. Pintauro was married to his husband, Wil Tabares, in 2014. The following year, Pintauro revealed to the world that he has been HIV positive for more than a decade. He first dropped this news on Oprah. Since then, Pintauro started the “Beacon of Light Tour” to spread awareness about HIV. He’s also been apart of other HIV campaigns to help eliminate the stigma attached to the disease. Pintauro also works with anti-drug campaigns because he struggled with addiction for quite some time as well.
12. Heather Matarazzo
Heather Matarazzo was in several big films when she was young. The most famous of these was when she played the role of Lilly in The Princess Diaries. Matarazzo has been very busy since then, but her work hasn’t been as widely known as when she was young and playing Anne Hathaway’s best friend on screen. In 2008, it was announced that Matarazzo was engaged to be married to musician Caroline Murphy. The couple called off their engagement a few years later without any public explanation. She is now said to be in a relationship with comedian Heather Turman. The long and the short of it is that Matarazzo is gay, in case you weren’t aware or hadn’t caught on.
11. Thomas Dekker
Thomas Dekker is an actor who has been working for many years in all sorts of films and TV shows, such as Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, and Heroes. Dekker had an awkward thing happen when Bryan Fuller, the creator of American Gods, described a situation during an awards acceptance speech. He said, “I had a brief stint on Heroes where the gay character was ‘hetwashed’ after the actor’s management threatened to pull him from the show if he—the character, not the actor—were gay. The character became straight and the actor came out as gay.” Here, Fuller was referring to Dekker, but although he had married his husband, he had not publicly come out as gay. Dekker took Instagram to clarify things, saying, “S*xual orientation once again came into question this week when a prominent gay man used an awards acceptance speech to ‘out’ me… [while] it is an odd situation, I thank him because it presents a prime opportunity for me to publicly say that I am indeed a man who proudly loves other men.”
10. Demi Lovato
Demi Lovato hasn’t officially “come out” necessarily. She has said on Alan Carr’s Chatty Man, “All of my songs are based off of personal experiences. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with experimentation at all.” This was in response to the question about her song “Cool for the summer,” which is about a bisexual experience. She also said about her sexuality, “I am not confirming and I’m definitely not denying.” That was as good as coming out for many people. Then, a couple of months ago, Lovato was spotted out with another woman. They saw these two gorgeous women holding hands at Disneyworld, and people immediately assumed that they were girlfriends. Whatever they are, though, they make a very attractive couple.
9. Jonathan Bennett
You would know Jonathan Bennett as one of the stars of Cheaper by the Dozen and Mean Girls, but you may not know that the star is a gay man. The public was informed about this in a very strange way. Unfortunately, Bennett never got to control the news because it was released accidentally by someone else. It came during an interview between the host of Extra, Mario Lopez, and Julianne Hough. Hough was saying, “[Bennett] tweeted me last year and said, like, I had a nice butt, but he also tagged my trainer,” she said. “And so I was like, ‘Oh, he’s hitting on me. I should try to go on a date with him.’” When asked what happened from there, Hough said, “He’s gay… So, I was like, that’s not gonna work.” Now, Bennett didn’t really clarify things after that, but it’s well-known that he is gay.
8. Anna Paquin
We know that you know who Anna Paquin is and what she’s done in her career. She started very young and is still a major star. Though Paquin is married to her True Blood co-star, Stephen Moyer, and they have children, she is an openly bisexual woman. She came out years ago, saying, “It wasn’t like it was a big secret, it was just a cause I cared about and privately supported, but not one that I had ever had an opportunity to speak out about in a way that would be useful. Obviously, I know that one person’s voice doesn’t necessarily do that much, but I just wanted to do my bit.” Although this was big news at the time, it’s possible that you missed it so we’re just filling in some gaps here.
7. Matt Dallas
Known for starring in Kyle XY, among other things, Matt Dallas still works in the industry; he just isn’t a front-and-center type of actor anymore. Although Dallas had been dating musician Blue Hamilton since 2009, it wasn’t until 2013 that he publicly announced his sexuality alongside the engagement announcement. Dallas and Hamilton are now happily married and are already parents. It’s actually been said that Dallas and another entry on this list, Jonathan Bennett, used to date, but that cannot be confirmed. The timelines don’t really seem to add up unless Dallas was with Hamilton and Bennett at the same time. But, hey, this is Hollywood after all.
6. Maia Brewton
Maia Brewton played the great sister character, Sara, in Adventures in Babysitting. She also played the sister on Parker Lewis Can’t Lose. She also played the sister of Lorraine Baines in Back to the Future. She basically has only ever played sisters, and she nailed it every time. She then went on to marry a sister, Lara Spotts, in 2008. Technically, we don’t know if Lara Spotts is a sister or even has a sister. We just wanted to keep rolling with that one. We do know that Spotts is a female, though. In the end, the news is very simple. Former child star, Brewton, announced that she was gay when you weren’t looking or paying attention.
5. Chad Allen
Chad Allen is most famous for his time on the show Our House and for playing Zach Nichols on the sitcom My Two Dads. Although he has done other things, it’s these two projects that made him into a star. Recently, Allen retired from acting. Long before that, more than 20 years ago in 1996, a tabloid magazine published photos of Allen kissing another man, publicly outing the actor for the first time. Since that time, Allen has become a powerful voice in LGBT activism and has been featured on television and print as an educated and personal voice in the discussion.
4. Mara Wilson
Maybe you missed it because your attention was on the tragedy that was the shootings in Las Vegas, but Mara Wilson, former child star from Matilda and other films, came out as a bisexual woman not too long ago. Her timing could not have been worse, coming out on Twitter on the same day of the shootings, but to be honest, people’s reactions to her news was ridiculous. She never used the tragedy to talk about herself. She just didn’t acknowledge the tragedy. Does every star have to say something? What if she couldn’t find the words? What if that tragedy did inspire her to evaluate her life choices? Is that so wrong? Regardless, Wilson tweeted about the LGBT community and how welcoming they had been to her even when she identified as straight. She then said that they remained welcoming, “especially a few years later when I, uh, learned something about myself.” That was her way of saying, “I’m not straight.”
3. Ross Hull
Canadians might be more familiar with Ross Hull than most, but everyone of a certain age remembers him as Gary from Are You Afraid of the Dark? Lately, Hull has been a meteorologist on several different news channels in Canada. Hull has also been living as an out gay man for many years now. He has said of the decision to come out, “As for being ‘out,’ I think that’s all a part of being comfortable with who you are, and that ultimately helps you in all aspects of life. It’s not always easy to get to that point, though, which is why a supportive community always helps as well as knowing that others have taken that path (with success) before you.” Well, we support you, Hull. We’ll always have fond memories of the long nights sitting around a campfire and telling scary stories together.
2. Leanna Creel
Leanna Creel is remembered best for her work on Saved by the Bell. She played the lesbian that Zack was into, Tori. Technically, she wasn’t a lesbian on the show, but c’mon, we all knew what she liked. Creel didn’t do a whole lot in the industry after that. She worked, but she was never in anything of consequence. It’s been almost a decade since Creel married her girlfriend, Rinat Greenberg. So, she’s happy in her life now.
But there’s another story here. Amazingly, Kirk Cameron, one of the staunchest and vocal homophobes from Hollywood has a connection to Creel. It was actually Creel’s father, a pastor, who turned Cameron on to hating people. Cameron and Creel were dating back when Cameron was converted to his current hateful ways. He has admitted that it was meeting Creel’s father that made him the person he is today. We are unsure if Creel’s father is as disgusting as Cameron or if Cameron’s twisted his message, but the result is the result. We’re willing to bet that Creel has some regrets about her role in creating this monster.
1. Evan Rachel Wood
Evan Rachel Wood has been a powerhouse actor ever since she was young. Though she had many roles as a child, such as one in Practical Magic, she really broke out with her performance in Thirteen. Since Wood grew up in the public eye, it seems unlikely that people could learn anything new about her, but her most famous relationships have been with men, so many assume she is heterosexual. That’s not the whole truth, though. Wood is a bisexual woman. She came out on Twitter and later said, “I’m up for anything. Meet a nice guy, meet a nice girl.” Recently, she dated Katherine Moennig, but the two have split. Most recently, she’s been with a man, but that doesn’t change who she is.
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