Sir Ian Mckellen. Born Burnley, Lancashire. Versatile stage and film actor with a repertoire ranging from the classics through science fiction films and pantomime to Coronation Street. He ‘came out’ in 1988 and has since been an active campaigner for gay rights. Awarded the C.B.E. In 1979, knighted 1991 and made a Companion of Honour in 2008. Nicknamed ‘Serena’.