After years in the closet, he came out as gay in 1988.
But Sir Ian McKellen believes young people will no longer have to even label their sexuality because ‘fluidity is the future’.
The veteran actor welcomed society becoming more relaxed and accepting of sexuality and that youngsters no longer feel they have to identify as gay, straight or bisexual.
Sir Ian, 78, revealed he was gay during a BBC radio discussion about laws banning councils from promoting homosexuality or showing gay relationships as normal.
He has since become an activist and now tours schools to campaign against homophobia.
Speaking yesterday as he announced his return to the stage, he said: ‘I think the future is, as it was expressed to me by a couple of sixth form girls the other day, they don’t want labels.
‘They don’t want to be labelled lesbian, they don’t want to be labelled bisexual, they don’t want to be labelled anything… Fluidity is the future.’ Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, he added: ‘I think that’s terribly hopeful. I think the world will be changing beautifully and people will be more relaxed and accepting, that’s what I pick up from schools.’
Sir Ian came out on January 27, 1988, during a BBC Radio 3 discussion on Section 28 of the Local Government Bill 1988 which prevented local authorities from ‘intentionally promoting homosexuality’.
Asked whether he would like to see Section 28 abolished, Sir Ian said: ‘I certainly would. It’s offensive to anyone who is – like myself – homosexual, apart from the whole business of what can and cannot be taught to children.’
Last month, on the 30th anniversary of revealing his sexuality, Sir Ian tweeted: ‘I’ve never met a gay person who regretted coming out – including myself. Life, at last, begins to make sense when you are open and honest.’