Ian McKellen

Openly gay, Golden Globe winning Actor, Sir Ian McKellen has featured in a powerful short film, where the 77-year-old tells all about his experiences growing up gay.

“Gay people, homosexuals, conducted their lives as secretly as possible,” Sir Ian McKellen explained, in the four-minute film.

Directed by filmmaker Joe Stephenson for Tate Britain’s new Queer British Art exhibit, which aims to provide an intimate overview into the lives of six different LGBTQ individuals.

McKellen who contributes with an emotional reflection on his childhood growing up in Britain, speaks about why he is now, so vocal about LGBTI issues nowadays, despite the backlash and resistance which he often receives from conservatives and homophobes.

“Part of the reason I proselytize, talk about being gay, is because I don’t want today’s children not to enjoy their sexuality,” McKellen says. “Be aware of it, think about it, puzzle about it, discuss it, have it out in the open, because of course it’s central to what you are.”

Watch the full which also features Actor Scott Chambers for McKellen’s narrative below: