April 1, 2010 / 6:59 PM / 8 years ago

"True Blood" star Anna Paquin says she is bisexual

LOS ANGELES (Reuters Life!) - Oscar winner Anna Paquin came out as bisexual on Thursday in a video campaign for gay rights advocates, surprising the “True Blood” star’s fans and causing the organization’s web site to crash.

<p>Actor Stephen Moyer and actress Anna Paquin, co stars on HBO's True Blood, arrive at the 2010 Vanity Fair Oscar party in West Hollywood, California March 7, 2010. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok</p>

The actress’ message came in a celebrity-laden public service announcement for the Give a Damn campaign, a web-based anti-discrimination effort backed by singer Cyndi Lauper’s True Colors Fund.

“I‘m bisexual,” Paquin said, before adding that “one hate crime is committed approximately every hour of every day in this country.”

Paquin last year confirmed that she is engaged to her boyfriend and “True Blood” co-star Stephen Moyer.

A representative for the actress could not immediately be reached for comment.

Lauper, Whoopi Goldberg, Elton John and Sharon Osbourne were among the other stars who appeared in the message.

<p>New Zealand actress Anna Paquin poses during a photocall for U.S. director Brett Ratner's out of competition film "X-Men: The Last Stand" at the 59th Cannes Film Festival May 22, 2006. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard</p>

“I’ve come to realize equality means a lot to people who don’t have it and that, as a straight person, I have a responsibility to stand up for gay and transgender people each and every day,” Lauper said in a statement.

Paquin’s assertion came as a surprise to fans of her work on television and in the movies, where she won an Oscar for best supporting actress at age 11 in 1993’s “The Piano,” because she had not previously said she was bisexual.

Since 2008, the Canadian-born Paquin has played a telepathic person in vampire TV series “True Blood” on cable network HBO.

The organization said in a Twitter message that it’s web site, wegiveadamn.org, crashed due to overwhelming traffic.

Celebrities in the video also raised concern about the U.S. military’s policy of discharging openly gay soldiers.

President Barack Obama has stated his goal to scrap the so-called “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, and this week the U.S. Army secretary said he would not discharge gay personnel who admitted their sexual orientation to him.

Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis: Editing by Bob Tourtellotte

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