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. Picture: AP

London - 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 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."

He will return this year to the stage where he made his theatre debut and will star in the title role of King Lear. The six-time Laurence Olivier Award-winner appeared at the Duke of York’s Theatre in London in 1964.

Daily Mail