Irish American actress Kelly McGillis, best known for her role in 'Top Gun,' has recently confirmed that she's a lesbian. But she's not the only Irish celebrity who's come out...
Oscar Wilde (1854-1900) is probably the most legendary Irish gay man. The Dublin-born famous Irish playwright, known for his biting wit, was imprisoned for two years for 'gross indecency' (i.e. he was gay)
Outspoken actress, TV host and comedian Rosie O'Donnell is a well-known LGBT activist. The daughter of an Irish American mother and Donegal-born father, O'Donnell came out in 2002, saying: 'I'm a dyke!...I don't know why people make such a big deal about the gay thing'
Colm Toibin, the award-winning Irish novelist and critic from County Wexford, is an openly gay man
English performer Boy George (a.k.a. George O’Dowd) – the son of parents from Tipperary - gave androgyny an international stage with the Culture Club in the 80s. He's said in interviews that he's bisexual, and gave a famous, response to an interviewer that he preferred 'a nice cup of tea' to sex
Controversial Irish singer Sinead O'Connor says her sexuality is undefinable. In 2000, O'Connor outed herself as a lesbian, saying: 'I'm a dyke.' However, in another interview soon after, she stated, 'I believe it was overcompensating of me to declare myself a lesbian...I am not in a box of any description'
Morrissey is another celeb who says his sexual preference is irrelevant and undefined. The legendary English singer songwriter and former vocalist of The Smiths, who has Irish Catholic parents, stated in 1984 that he refused 'to recognize the terms hetero-, bi-, and homo-sexual' because 'everybody has exactly the same sexual needs.' Throughout much of his career, he maintained in interviews that he was asexual and celibate.
Part-Irish American actress Jodie Foster has never officially announced she's a lesbian, but in 2007, Foster made headlines when during an acceptance speech she paid tribute to her 'my beautiful Cydney, who sticks with me through the rotten and the bliss.' Some media interpreted this as Foster coming out.
Mark Feehily of popular Irish boy band Westlife came out as gay in the British tabloid 'The Sun,' saying: 'My life has got umpteen times better. My sexuality doesn't define me as a person, but it's a huge part of anyone to be open about it. It's changed my life totally as I feel so much happier and at ease. It's the best thing I've ever done.'
Another Irish boybander, the late Stephen Gately of Boyzone, also told 'The Sun' he was gay. His manager Louis Walsh was unaware of Gately's sexuality when he selected him for the band and has controversially said that, had he known, he would have thought twice before picking him, saying that 'it wasn't cool then to have a gay guy in a band'
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