George Takei receives the Vito Russo Award

Openly gay Star Trek actor George Takei was honoured at the star-studded 25th Annual GLAAD Media Awards in New York on Saturday, while Kylie Minogue wowed the crowd with an a cappella performance.

Takei, who played the iconic role of Sulu in the original Star Trek franchise, was awarded the Vito Russo Award, which is presented to an out media professional who has made a significant difference in promoting equality.

“…as long as LGBT people can be fired from their job for simply being who they are, our work isn’t done yet,” said Takei in his acceptance speech.

“As long as young people are kicked out of their families just for being who they are, our work is not done yet. As long as people are be bullied into feeling that their lives are so hopeless that they are driven to self-destructive acts, our work is not done.”

The actor, advocate, social media star and author, who came out in 2005, is one of the most vocal LGBT voices in Hollywood. He has spoken out on issues including marriage equality, employment discrimination, so-called “ex-gay therapy” and more. In 2008, Takei married his partner of more than 20 years, Brad Altman.

Also at the ceremony, British singer Boy George introduced global superstar Kylie Minogue, who performed her massive 2001 hit Can’t Get You Out of My Head on a dinner table to the appreciative audience.

“For me, with the LGBT community, there was never a question of questions. Acceptance is natural to me. It’s just part my life. But unfortunately it isn’t to so many people,” said the singer.


Kylie Minogue performs for the audience

“The LGBT community has really been there for me throughout my entire career. If I’ve been able to do a little bit of [promoting LGBT equality] through my work then that makes my heart beat a little bit louder and a little bit stronger.”

The award for Outstanding Comedy Series went to Orange Is the New Black. The episode of Oprah’s Next Chapter in which Oprah Winfrey interviewed the first openly gay NBA player Jason Collins and his family won the Outstanding Talk Show Episode.

Looking cast members Raúl Castillo and Frankie J. Álvarez presented the award for Outstanding Individual Episode to the Sherlock Holmes series Elementary for an episode titled Snow Angels.

Concussion was awarded Outstanding Film – Limited Release while Philomena was honoured with the Outstanding Film – Wide Release award.

The GLAAD Media Awards recognise and honour media for their fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the LGBT community and the issues that affect their lives.

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