10 Celebrities Who Came Out Later In Life

Stefan Servos/Openverse

Discovering and accepting one’s identity is a journey that often unfolds over time, even for those in the public eye. According to KTVZ, these ten celebrities courageously chose to come out later, reshaping perceptions and inspiring countless others. Here are 10 celebrities who reflect resilience, authenticity, and the power of living truthfully. 

Ian McKellen

Gage Skidmore/Openverse

In 1988, at the age of 49, The Lord of the Rings actor publicly announced his homosexuality. Before his announcement, he had fearlessly advocated for LGBTQ+ rights while maintaining privacy about his personal life. McKellen’s openness about his sexuality has made him a pivotal figure in the entertainment industry and the LGBTQ+ community.

Jodie Foster

Alan Light/Openverse

In 2013, Jodie Foster publicly addressed her sexual orientation for the first time during her acceptance speech at the Golden Globe Awards. Despite years of speculation, Foster had maintained a private stance on her personal life until then. The decision to come out later in her career was met with widespread support.

Wanda Sykes


Comedian and actress Wanda Sykes came out as a lesbian in 2008 at a Las Vegas rally in support of LGBTQ+ rights. Sykes, acclaimed for her sharp wit and humor, revealed her sexuality as a response to California’s Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage. Her openness about her identity has since strengthened her advocacy efforts.

George Takei

Gage Skidmore/Openverse

Recognized as Hikaru Sulu in Star Trek, Takei came out as gay in 2005 at the age of 68. His decision to share his sexuality later in life was motivated by a desire to combat stereotypes and promote LGBTQ+ visibility in mainstream media. George has since become a prominent advocate for LGBTQ+ rights.

Rebel Wilson

Eva Rinaldi/Openverse

The comedic actress, recognized for her roles in “Pitch Perfect” and “Bridesmaids,” acknowledged her sexuality in 2020 during an Instagram Live session. Rebel Wilson, previously private about her personal life, celebrated her decision to come out as bisexual later in her career.


Thomas Attila Lewis/Openverse

Academy Award-winning actress and comedian addressed her sexuality during a 2010 interview with Barbara Walters. Mo’Nique, with her outspoken personality and comedic talent, revealed that she is open to loving both men and women, marking a significant moment of self-acceptance later in her career. 

Cynthia Nixon

nick step/Openverse

Popular for her role in “Sex and the City,” Nixon announced that she was bisexual in 2012 during a speech at a marriage equality rally in New York City. Later in her career, Nixon, a longtime advocate for LGBTQ+ rights, shared her journey of self-discovery, emphasizing the significance of representation in media and politics.

Ricky Martin

Eva Rinaldi/Openverse

Ricky Martin, the international pop sensation and philanthropist, revealed he was gay in 2010 through a heartfelt statement on his official website. Martin, known for hits like “Livin’ la Vida Loca,” had previously handled speculation about his sexuality while focusing on his music career. 

Elliot Page

Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America/Openverse

Acclaimed for roles in “Juno” and “The Umbrella Academy,” Elliot came out as transgender in 2020 through a heartfelt statement on social media. Page, previously known as Ellen Page, courageously embraced his true gender identity later in his career, promoting greater acceptance and representation of transgender individuals within the entertainment sector.

Ellen DeGeneres

Alan Light/Openverse

Ellen disclosed she was a lesbian in 1997 during an episode of her sitcom “Ellen.” DeGeneres, loved for her humor and kindness, faced significant backlash and career challenges following her decision to share her sexuality later in her career. However, her bravery paved the way for LGBTQ+ representation on television and inspired countless individuals to live authentically.

Written by Devin J