Ian McKellen Explains Why Gay Men Are More Masculine

Sir Ian and BFF Patrick Stewart dish on their ongoing love affair.

If ever there were poster boys for the gay man/straight man friendship, it would have to be Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen.

“I know that I’m in a love affair with Ian,” declared Stewart in a recent joint interview with the Evening Standard.

Oh aren’t we all, Sir Patrick?

patrick stewart ian mckellen

“What I love about Patrick is that he’s so predictably myself,” teased McKellen. “I think we are the same person. If Patrick comes into a rehearsal room and says, ’Look, look…’ I know what it’s going to be about.”

“So it’s actually because you’re a narcissist and who you’re in love with is yourself,’ countered Stewart.

The dynamic duo, who performed Waiting for Godot together on Broadway in 2013, are prepping for another stage reunion Harold Pinter’s No Man’s Land, opening in London next week.


The two master thespians share a love of the stage, progressive politics and having a bloody good time. They both, perhaps not coincidentally, have also both played military roles numerous times.

ian mckellan patrick stewart

“I’ve probably played even more military men than Patrick,’ McKellen opines. “Gandalf is a soldier, Magneto is a soldier, Richard III, Coriolanus, Macbeth. And I think the reason is because I want my revenge on… the people who start wars, perpetuate them and glory in them.”

He dismisses the idea that violence and war are hallmarks of being a man.

“If that’s what masculinity is then I don’t want any part of it at all. I think gay men are more masculine than straight men. Because, guess what? They love other men!’”

Adds the X-Men star, “So when bully boys say: “Faggot!” you say, ‘That’s right, I’m with the boys.”

And we’re with these boys.

h/t: Out

Dan Avery is a writer-editor who focuses on culture, breaking news and LGBT rights. His work has appeared in Newsweek, The New York Times, Time Out New York, The Advocate and elsewhere.