Chaz Bono was originally born Chastity Bono to Cher and Sonny Bono. He has been famous for decades due to being a celebrity kid, but has gone on to make a name for himself as an actor. Most recently he has played the role of Gary K. Longstreet on American Horror Story: Cult. But it wasn’t always so easy for him, especially with the trials and tribulations he had to overcome first.
He was born on March 4th, 1969. Bono would come out as a lesbian at the age of 18. He would then make the leap to transitioning to the male gender at the age of 39. However, it was not until 2010 that his legal gender and name were officially changed. He is now 50 years old and thriving!
Meet Chaz Bono
Bono wrote a book called Family Outing: A Guide to the Coming Out Process for Gays, Lesbians, and Their Families in 1998. He details in the book that his mom, Cher, actually “went ballistic” when he first came out to her as a lesbian.
“…as a child, I always felt there was something different about me. I’d look at other girls my age and feel perplexed by their obvious interest in the latest fashion, which boy in class was the cutest, and who looked the most like cover girl Christie Brinkley. When I was 13, I finally found a name for exactly how I was different. I realized I was gay.”
His Hollywood career and making a name for himself despite the odds
Bono’s experience in transitioning into a man was documented in Becoming Chaz. It was shown at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival and would later debut on the Oprah Winfrey Network. While Cher initially freaked out at the confession, she would eventually come around to it. She would begin to accept and embrace Bono’s orientation, and would even become an outspoken LGBTQ+ activist.
As for Bono’s Hollywood career, it first began when he was still Chastity. In 1972, he starred on the Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour. He also made history by becoming the first transgender man to compete on Dancing with the Stars in 2011. By 2016, he would appear in five episodes of American Horror Story: Roanoke and play Reverend Rydale on The Bold and the Beautiful.