Gay Actresses

by cobalt_s | created - 11 Jun 2011 | updated - 03 Mar 2017 | Public

This is a list of openly gay or bi-sexual actresses and a celebration of very talented women.

1. Jodie Foster

Actress | The Silence of the Lambs

Jodie Foster was born Alicia Christian Foster on November 19, 1962 in Los Angeles. She is the daughter of Evelyn Ella "Brandy" (Almond), a producer, and Lucius Fisher Foster III, an Air Force lieutenant colonel and real estate broker. Brandy had filed for divorce in 1959 after having three children...

2. Ellen Page

Actress | Juno

Ellen Grace Philpotts-Page was born on February 21, 1987, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, to Martha Philpotts, a teacher, and Dennis Page, a graphic designer. Page wanted to start acting at an early age and attended the Neptune Theater School. She began her career at the age of 10 on the award-winning ...

3. Rosie O'Donnell

Actress | Sleepless in Seattle

Rosie O'Donnell was born into an Irish-American family in Commack, Long Island. She is the middle of 5 children, and is the daughter of Roseann Teresa (Murtha) and Edward Joseph O'Donnell, an electrical engineer for the defense industry. Her mother died when she was ten. She said that she watched ...

4. Sandra Bernhard

Actress | The King of Comedy

Love her or hate her, this comic diva is a one-of-a-kind, in-your-face, take-no-prisoners artiste. Racy, confrontational, offensive, cynical, off-putting and angst-ridden to a T, this flinty stand-up from Flint, Michigan was born on June 6, 1955, the daughter of Jerome Bernhard, a proctologist, and...

5. Ellen DeGeneres

Producer | Ellen: The Ellen DeGeneres Show

Emmy-winning talk show host Ellen Lee DeGeneres was born in Metairie, Louisiana, a New Orleans suburb. She is the daughter of Betty DeGeneres (née Elizabeth Jane Pfeffer), a speech therapist, and Elliott Everett DeGeneres, an insurance agent. Her brother is musician and producer Vance DeGeneres. ...

6. Cynthia Nixon

Actress | Sex and the City 2

Cynthia Nixon was born in New York City on April 9, 1966, to Anne Elizabeth Knoll, an actress, and Walter E. Nixon, Jr., a radio journalist. She has German and English ancestry. Nixon made a memorable film debut in Little Darlings (1980). Her Broadway credits include "The Last Night of Ballyhoo," "...

7. Jane Lynch

Actress | Glee

Jane Lynch was born on July 14, 1960 in Dolton, Illinois, USA as Jane Marie Lynch. She is an actress, known for Glee (2009), Wreck-It Ralph (2012) and Role Models (2008). She was previously married to Lara Embry.

8. Lily Tomlin

Actress | Nashville

Lily Tomlin was born September 1, 1939 in Detroit, Michigan, to Lillie Mae (Ford) and Guy Tomlin, who moved to Michigan from Paducah, Kentucky, during the Great Depression. Her mother was a nurse's aide and her father was a factory worker. She graduated from Cass Technical High School in 1957, and ...

9. Sarah Paulson

Actress | 12 Years a Slave

Sarah Paulson was born on December 17, 1974 in Tampa, Florida, to Catharine Gordon (Dolcater) and Douglas Lyle Paulson II. She spent most of her early years in New York and Maine, before settling in Manhattan to attend the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and the High School for Performing Arts. ...

10. Holland Taylor

Actress | Legally Blonde

Holland Taylor was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the third-born (and last) daughter of her mother, Virginia (Davis), a painter, and the only child of her father, C. Tracy Taylor, an attorney. She spent her teen years in nearby Allentown, PA, where Holland got the nickname, "Penny Taylor" ...

11. Amanda Bearse

Actress | Married with Children

Amanda Bearse was born on August 9, 1958 in Winter Park, Florida, USA. She is an actress and director, known for Married with Children (1986), Fright Night (1985) and Nikki (2000). She has been married to Carrie Schenken since 2010. They have two children.

12. Meredith Baxter

Actress | All the President's Men

Meredith Baxter was born on June 21, 1947 in South Pasadena, California, USA as Meredith Ann Baxter. She is an actress and producer, known for All the President's Men (1976), Family Ties (1982) and A Woman Scorned: The Betty Broderick Story (1992). She has been married to Nancy Locke since December...

13. Lindsay Lohan

Actress | The Parent Trap

Lindsay Dee Lohan was born in New York City, on 2 July 1986, to Dina Lohan and Michael Lohan. She began her career at age three as a Ford model, and also made appearances in over sixty television commercials, including spots for The Gap, Pizza Hut, Wendy's, and Jell-O (opposite Bill Cosby). Lohan ...

14. Wanda Sykes

Actress | Monster-in-Law

Wanda Sykes has been called one of the funniest stand-up comics by her peers and ranks among Entertainment Weekly's 25 Funniest People in America. Her smart-witted stand-up has sent her career in many different areas.

She was recently seen in Comedy Central's Wanda Does It (2004), where she tried ...

15. Portia de Rossi

Actress | Arrested Development

Portia de Rossi was born and raised in Geelong, Australia. Originally born Amanda Rogers, at 15 she changed her name to Portia, saying that it was the most daring thing she had ever done up until that point. After graduating from high school, she attended the University of Melbourne, and studied ...

16. Jenny Shimizu

Actress | Foxfire

Born in San Jose, California in June 1967, Jenny grew up in Santa Maria, California and attended California State University, Northridge on a basketball scholarship. She later moved to Los Angeles to open a car garage. Soon after, Jenny was approached by a casting director while saddling her ...

17. Margaret Cho

Producer | Margaret Cho: PsyCHO

Margaret Cho was born Dec. 5, 1968 and raised in San Francisco. Her grandfather was a Methodist minister who ran an orphanage in Seoul during the Korean War. Ignoring the traditions of her patriarchal culture, her mother bravely resisted an arranged marriage in Korea and married Margaret's father ...

18. Kristanna Loken

Actress | Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines

Kristanna Sommer Loken was born in Ghent, New York, to Rande (Porath) and Merlin "Chris" Loken. She is of half Norwegian and half German descent. She began her modeling career at the early age of 15. Encouraged by her mother, who was a model prior to her daughter's birth, Kristanna's modeling ...

19. Sara Gilbert

Producer | Roseanne

Sara Gilbert was born on January 29, 1975, as Sara Rebecca Abeles at St. John's Hospital and Health Center in Santa Monica, California, to Harold and Barbara Abeles. Barbara was previously married to the late Paul Gilbert. At the age of six, when Sara saw her sister Melissa Gilbert get a star on ...

20. Heather Matarazzo

Actress | Welcome to the Dollhouse

Heather Matarazzo was born November 10, 1982, in Oyster Bay, New York. She was adopted by Camille and Ray Matarazzo, an Italian-American couple (she is of Irish descent birth). Heather attended Oyster Bay High School, as well as the Long Island High School for the Arts. In 1997, she made her film ...

21. Fiona Shaw

Actress | Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1

Irish theater, television and film actress, Fiona Shaw was an already-formidable stage actress before she first dipped into on-screen acting making consecutive appearances in television. It wasn't until the mid '80s that director Jim Sheridan awarded the actress with a role in his film, My Left Foot...

22. Saffron Burrows

Actress | Deep Blue Sea

Saffron Burrows, known for her work in critically acclaimed films, stars in the Golden Globe winning Amazon series Mozart in the Jungle. Upcoming, Burrows will star in award-winning playwright Tom Dugan's one-woman drama Jackie Unveiled at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. The ...

23. Amber Heard

Actress | The Rum Diary

Amber Laura Heard was born in Austin, Texas, to Patricia Paige Heard (née Parsons), an internet researcher, and David C. Heard (David Clinton Heard), a contractor. She has English, Irish, Scottish, German, and Welsh ancestry.

Heard appeared in the Academy Award-nominated film, North Country (2005), ...

24. Leisha Hailey

Actress | The L Word

Leisha Hailey was born on July 11, 1971 in Okinawa, Japan. She is an actress, known for The L Word (2004), All Over Me (1997) and Fertile Ground (2011).

25. Miriam Margolyes

Actress | The Age of Innocence

A veteran of stage and screen, award-winning actress Miriam Margolyes has achieved success on both sides of the Atlantic. Winner of the BAFTA Best Supporting Actress award in 1993 for The Age of Innocence (1993) she also received Best Supporting Actress at the 1989 LA Critics Circle Awards for her ...

26. Kristy McNichol

Actress | The Pirate Movie

Actor Kristy McNichol is best known for her role as "Buddy" in the Spelling/Goldberg hit TV series Family (1976), where she won 2 Emmy awards and was nominated for a Golden Globe. McNichol began her career with guest appearances on such popular TV series as Starsky and Hutch, The Bionic Woman, Love...

27. Kelly McGillis

Actress | Witness

Kelly Ann McGillis was born in Newport Beach, California, to Virginia Joan (Snell), a homemaker, and Donald Manson McGillis, a general practitioner of medicine. She has English, Welsh, Scots-Irish, and German ancestry. McGillis dropped out of high school to pursue a career as an actress, and ...

28. Alla Nazimova

Actress | Eye for Eye

The grand, highly flamboyant Russian star Alla Nazimova of Hollywood silent films lived an equally grand, flamboyant life off-camera, though her legendary status has not held up as firmly as that of a Rudolph Valentino today.

Alla Nazimova was born Miriam Edez Adelaida Leventon in 1879, in Yalta, ...

29. Tallulah Bankhead

Actress | Lifeboat

Tallulah Brockman Bankhead was born on January 31, 1902 in Huntsville, Alabama. Her father was a mover and shaker in the Democratic Party who served as Speaker of the United States House of Representatives from June 4, 1936, to September 16, 1940. Tallulah had been interested in acting and, at age ...

30. Marjorie Main

Actress | The Egg and I

Her father was a minister, and when she joined a local stock company as a youngster she changed her name to avoid embarrassing her family. She worked in vaudeville and debuted on Broadway in 1916. Her film debut was in A House Divided (1931). She repeated her stage role in Dead End (1937) as Baby ...

31. Spring Byington

Actress | You Can't Take It with You

The possessor of one of Hollywood's gentlest faces and warmest voices, and about as sweet as Tupelo honey both on-and-off camera, character actress Spring Byington was seldom called upon to play callous or unsympathetic (she did once play a half-crazed housekeeper in Dragonwyck (1946)). Although ...

32. Eva Le Gallienne

Actress | Resurrection

Legendary stage actress Eva Le Gallienne's life began just as grandly as the daughter of poet Richard Le Gallienne. Sarah Bernhardt was her idol growing up and, at age 18, was brought to New York by her mother. Making her London debut with "Monna Vanna" in 1914, she proved a star in every sense of ...

33. Fannie Flagg

Writer | Fried Green Tomatoes

Fannie Flagg was born on September 21, 1944 in Birmingham, Alabama, USA as Patricia Neal. She is an actress and writer, known for Fried Green Tomatoes (1991), Grease (1978) and Five Easy Pieces (1970).

34. Nancy Kulp

Actress | The Beverly Hillbillies

Nancy Kulp wore many hats: Publicity person, actress, linguist, would-be politician and teacher. Originally from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Kulp attended college in Florida, then headed for Hollywood to work in publicity for the movies, not star in them. Soon after arriving in Hollywood, Kulp was ...

35. Lea DeLaria

Actress | Orange Is the New Black

Lea DeLaria was born on May 23, 1958 in Belleville, Illinois, USA. She is an actress, known for Orange Is the New Black (2013), Cars 3 (2017) and Edge of Seventeen (1998).

36. Tila Tequila

Actress | I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry

Singapore-born, Houston-raised Tila "Tequila" Nguyen has become a pop culture sensation. She is one of the most popular personalities in cyberspace, breaking records on MySpace, with a record breaking 1.4 million friends, as well as Facebook.

Raised in a Buddhist temple, the Vietnamese teenager soon...

37. Danitra Vance

Actress | The War of the Roses

Danitra Vance was born on July 13, 1954 in Chicago, Illinois, USA. She was an actress, known for The War of the Roses (1989), Jumpin' at the Boneyard (1991) and Miami Vice (1984). She died on August 21, 1994 in Markham, Illinois.

38. Nell Carter

Actress | Gimme a Break!

Her trademark sass complimented by a distinctively adenoidal voice that could out-snarl Eartha Kitt and Fran Drescher put together, short (4'11"), round, and robust Nell Carter was one indomitable, in-your-face firecracker...and it made her a star. She was born Nell Ruth Hardy in 1948 in Birmingham...



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