29/02/2016 11:01 GMT | Updated 29/02/2016 11:59 GMT

Oscars 2016: Sam Smith's Speech Prompts Response From Sir Ian McKellen

Sir Ian McKellen has clarified a comment he recently made about diversity at the Oscars, which was later misinterpreted by singer Sam Smith as he collected an award on Sunday night (28 February).


After being given the award for Best Original Song during this year’s ceremony, Sam sparked a backlash when he said: “I read an interview with Sir Ian McKellen that said no openly gay man had ever won an Oscar... I stand here as a proud gay man and I want to dedicate this to the LGBT community all around the world.”

Sam’s comments later landed him in hot water on social media, due to the fact that a handful of gay men have, in fact, won Academy Awards in the past, and Sir Ian has now taken to Twitter to explain what it was he actually said.

ian mckellen

Sir Ian McKellen

He wrote: “I'd said no openly gay actor had received Oscars - that doesn’t detract from [Sam Smith’s] achievement. Congratulations to him and all others.”

Sir Ian’s original quotes came from an interview printed in The Guardian, where he said no openly gay man had ever won the Academy Award for Best Actor or Best Supporting Actor, amid the controversy surrounding the lack of diversity among this year’s nominees.

sam smith

Sam Smith won the Oscar for Best Original Song

Sam has since tried to backtrack over his speech, but still managed to get it wrong, suggesting he was the “second” openly gay man to win an Oscar.

Meanwhile, although Sir Ian may be defending Sam, he’s managed to rub screenwriter (oh, and Oscar-winner) Dustin Lance Black up the wrong way, who publicly asked him to “stop texting his fiancé”, Tom Daley, if he’d truly never heard of him.


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