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Sir Ian McKellen calls on gay community to ‘be allies’ with trans people


Sir Ian McKellen stated we should ‘all be allies’ with the trans community (Picture: Rex)

Sir Ian McKellen has called on the gay community to publicly support trans people.

The Lord of the Rings actor took part in a conversation with Olly Alexander, hosted by TikTok, to mark LGBTQ+ History Month.

In the chat, the 81-year-old compared the hardships faced by many in the trans community to what the gay community lived through when he was younger.

He told the It’s A Sin actor: ‘I do hear people – gay people – talk about transgender people in very much the same terms as people used to talk about your common or garden gay.

‘The connection between us all is we come under the queer umbrella – we are queer. I quite like being queer actually.

‘The problems that transgender people have with the law are not dissimilar from what used to be the case for us, so I think we should all be allies really.

Olly Alexander spoke in conversation with Sir Ian McKellen (Picture: Getty)

‘But you say that and the wrath of God comes down on you from certain quarters.’

During the candid chat, Sir Ian also heaped praise on Russell T Davies’ drama, It’s A Sin – which depicted the Aids pandemic in the 1980s.

‘I got very involved – it was wonderful,’ he told the star – who played Ritchie in the five-part series – while recalling his own history. 

‘I can remember first hearing about Aids when I was in New York.

‘The rumour was that it was Ronald Reagan, the president of the United States who was famously indifferent to gay people, that his agents were putting poison through the air conditioning into gay clubs – talk about conspiracy theories.

‘But we didn’t know – we didn’t know what it was. It was all so confusing.’

‘My experience was so different from yours with regard to sex and being gay,’ he added.

‘I do envy your generation.’

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