It’s the end of the week, and you know what that means: #FlashbackFriday. To celebrate this time-honored tradition of social media, we thought we’d take a look at 10 of our favorite gay celebrities then and now — just for shits and giggles, really.
Here are 10 of our favorite gay celebrities then and now:
1. Ian McKellen
First on our list of gay celebrities then and now is the inimitable Ian McKellen. You know him as Gandalf, Magneto and as Patrick Stewart’s best friend. (The 79-year-old actor is basically our fantasy grandpa.) But, as the above photo from 1970 shows, he used to be quite the handsome young man. (Now he’s a handsome older man — don’t @ me.)
2. Wilson Cruz
Wilson Cruz has been acting for quite some time. Though we love him now for 13 Reasons Why and Star Trek: Discovery, back in the ’90s he appeared on the cult-classic My So-Called Life, which also launched the careers of Claire Danes and Jared Leto.
3. Guillermo Diaz
He’s been a regular on Scandal since 2012, but that’s far from the first time we fell in love with Guillermo Diaz. Though he played La Miranda in Stonewall (the 1995 movie, not the Roland Emmerich disaster), his first breakout role was as Scarface in 1998’s Half Baked.
4. Harvey Fierstein
Harvey Fierstein has long been a beloved gay icon — and, no, he’s not Harvey Weinstein. Similar to Wallace Shawn, he’s not only a character actor but a playwright. We found this promo pic from Torch Song Trilogy featuring the play’s star and writer front and center.
5. Zachary Quinto
Zachary Quinto has been in the public eye for years with huge roles like Spock in the Star Trek reboot and Dr. Oliver Thredson in American Horror Story. But his breakout role was as Adam Kaufman in the third season of 24.
6. André Leon Talley
André Leon Talley has had an amazing career. He started out as a fashion journalist, working at Andy Warhol‘s Factory, and he eventually ended up at Vogue as its creative director and editor-at-large. He’s also been the subject of his own documentary, The Gospel According to André, and has portrayed himself in a number of big shows like Sex and the City and Empire. Here he is in 1984, photographed by none other than Warhol himself.
7. Neil Patrick Harris
Neil Patrick Harris won a Tony in 2014 for starring in the Broadway revival of Hedwig and the Angry Inch, which we’re sure goes nicely with his 24 other acting awards. But no matter how much we love him and his work, a part of us will always think of him as Doogie Howser, M.D., his breakout role, pictured above.
8. Ricky Martin
Ricky Martin‘s yet another child star on our list. Before he was “Livin’ La Vida Loca” he was a member of the boy band Menudo. The Puerto Rican-based group was known for its ever-changing lineup, as members had to leave before they turned 16 — or whenever their voice dropped (whichever came first). Ricky Martin was part of the band from 1984-1989, but he never stopped being a star.
RuPaul‘s had a long, fascinating career. Starting out in the punk scenes of Atlanta and New York City, his charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent made him a supermodel, recording artist and drag ambassador to the world.
10. George Takei
Like Ian McKellen who started our list, George Takei has been acting for ages, starting in the late 1950s. But it was his role as Lt. Hikaru Sulu in the original Star Trek television series and films for which most people remember him. We love how he’s long used his fame to promote causes he believes in, making him one of our favorite gay celebrities then and now.