Samantha Fox turning tricks as a prostitute. Sir Ian McKellen being doused with a bottle of cider by teenagers while sleeping rough. Paul O’Grady huddling for warmth in an all-but-derelict house.
These unsettling images of the three stars appear in a new TV campaign for charity the Albert Kennedy Trust aims to raise awareness of the often difficult life that lesbian, bisexual, gay and transexual people can face when they are victimised.
The campaign – made by ad agency TBWA – also features comedian and TV presenter Sue Perkins, Hollyoaks actor Kieron Richardson and Andrew Hayden-Smith, whose credits include Byker Grove and Doctor Who.
Set to Radiohead’s Creep as sung by Scala choir, the ad aims to show that with a few unfortunate turns anyone’s life could end in life-threatening situations such as homelessness and prostitution.
“We live in a really fortunate corner of the world – we’re affluent and we’re lucky, and for people to still suffer because of the prejudice of some is unforgiveable.”
The agency and the actors donated their time for free – McKellen is a patron of AKT – and the campaign is the first that the charity has been able to run.
“We’ve used some well-known personalities in these tough situations to help let young LGBT people know where they can turn for support,”
said Robert Harwood-Matthews, president of TBWA UK.
“TBWA London is hugely proud to be a part of a such a groundbreaking campaign that hopes to increase awareness and shift behaviour towards a cause that too often goes unrecognised.”
AKT was founded following the death of Albert Kennedy, a 17-year-old who was the victim of a homophobic attack, ending in his death after falling from a multi-storey car park in 1989.