The Oscars’ diversity problem comes in many forms, actor Ian McKellen said yesterday.
McKellen pointed out that the Academy Awards not only continuously fail to honor actors of color but also ones who are openly gay.
“No openly gay man has ever won the Oscar; I wonder if that is prejudice or chance,” the actor, 76, told the Guardian.
McKellen — who is openly gay as well as a notable activist for LGBTQ rights and co-founder of Stonewall, a charity dedicated to the cause — agreed that black actors were “ill-treated and underestimated.”
He also noted that straight performers often win best actor awards for playing gay characters (Sean Penn in “Milk,” Philip Seymour Hoffman in “Capote,” Tom Hanks in “Philadelphia”) but asked, “What about giving me one for playing a straight man?”
McKellen was nominated for an Oscar on two occasions: in 1999 for best actor and in 2002 for best supporting actor. He lost both times. (amny)