Bard fought on side of diversity, claims Ian McKellen
Sir Ian McKellen has hailed William Shakespeare as a champion of diversity ahead of celebrations for the 400th anniversary of the Bard's death.
The 76-year-old said: "Anybody can relate to Shakespeare. Shakespeare wrote about black people. He wrote about us all. He wrote about gay people like me, he wrote about women - my goodness, did he write fantastic parts for women."
Sir Ian continued: "He wrote about leaders, tyrants, people you meet in the pubs, soldiers of all ranks, so the colour of your skin or the culture from which you come from isn't really relevant, but the plays go on being persistently relevant - and not just in this country."