'The Hunger Games' actress Amandla Stenberg officially comes out as gay in interview
While fans already know that Stenberg had come out as bisexual in 2016, but this will still be a watershed moment for the actress
Actress and singer Amandla Stenberg, known for playing the role of Rue in 'The Hunger Games' in 2012 and Madeline Whittier in 'Everything, Everything', has officially come out as gay. Stenberg made the revelation during an interview with musician King Princess for Wonderland Magazine, jokingly suggesting that the moment was akin to that of Ellen DeGeneres iconically coming out herself on the cover of TIME magazine in April 1997.
During the interview, Stenberg talks not just about her newfound comfort with identifying as gay, but also about how it offered her the ability to experience and understand love and sex. She also talked about what it was like growing up with her sexuality, her queer icons, the lack of black queer women on television, and how Mila Kunis was her first lesbian crush.
She talked about how she had to unlearn heteronormativity and internalized homophobia. "My sexuality is not a byproduct of my past experiences with men, who I have loved, but rather a part of myself, I was born with and love deeply," she said.
Stenberg also clarified something that has come to be known in queer circles as the 'gay sob.' She said that, unlike the popular notion that one cried because they were mournful of their sexuality, it was instead because of joy and a feeling of being overwhelmed and that it 'unraveled a long web of denial and self-deprivation.'
The actress revealed that she holds a special place in her heart for her icons; Audre Lorde's poems in high school; Frida Kahlo for her fluidity; Prince for teaching her the 'ephemeral and mystical nature' of her gender; and Syd, a member of band The Internet, for her pride in being gay.
The revelation will not have come as too much of a surprise but will still mark a watershed moment in her life. Fans will remember that she came out as bisexual in a series of videos on Teen Vogue's Snapchat channel in 2016.
However, at the time, she had played down the label, telling Elle: "Bisexual is a word I am not too attached to. It implies a dichotomy that doesn't take into account trans people. So maybe pansexual is more accurate for me."
Stenberg, who also identifies as non-binary, released her debut song '1950' in March. Outspoken about her political views in interviews and on social media, she was recognized as 'The Feminist of the Year' in 2015 by Ms. Foundation for America and has also been named as TIME's most influential teen two years running.
Just 19-years-old, the multi-talented actress is working on new music and filming for her role in 'The Hate U Give,' a George Tillman Jr drama about an impoverished black community. She will also be working on a young adult dystopian film called 'The Darkest Minds.'