She’s Come a Long Way, Baby: 10 Awesome Things Ellen’s Done Since She Said, “Yep, I’m Gay” and Before She Hosts the Oscars This Year


Ellen is hosting the Oscars (next Sunday on ABC). Again. Because she did a great job the first time. And we’d like to see more of her. And she suits the moment, because things are looking up and she’s got a sunny personality. Good choice, Academy!

It’s been a long time since Ellen came out on the cover of Time magazine in 1997, and on her sitcom Ellen in the “Puppy” episode, and in a one-on-one with Oprah on her show. Then it all just got too gay for ABC and Disney and they stopped promoting Ellen and ratings tanked and they cancelled it and the only thing Ellen had going for her for awhile was the bisexual Anne Heche.

They were an adorable couple and Anne was hot hot hot in the career department but then the work dried up for her, too. They split, and Anne went crazy for a minute.


That was in 2000. Ellen laid low for a while. She plotted. And planned. A triumphant return was in the works. Here are 10 awesome things she did on her way back up to the top.

1 emmys

1. She hosted the Emmy Awards in 2001.

You may recall that was a tough gig, given it was just weeks after 9/11 and the ceremony was postponed twice because it maybe felt a little unseemly to celebrate TV shows while we’re bombing Afghanistan. Fuck it, we did anyway and DeGeneres pulled it off with aplomb: “What would bug the Taliban more than seeing a gay woman in a suit surrounded by Jews?”

2 finding nemo

2. She played Dory in Finding Nemo in 2003.

A sea monkey has my money.” So funny. Funny enough to inspire a sequel, Finding Dory, due out in 2016.

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3. She started her own talk show.

The Ellen Degeneres Show premiered in the fall of 2003 and her first guest was Jennifer Aniston who was like the biggest thing around at that moment in time. Remember that whole flower theme thing on the set? Here’s Ellen’s first monologue.

4 oscars 2007

4. She hosted the Oscars in 2007.

She done so good on the Emmys that one year, the folks at the Academy said come do our show. She did great. Loved the smoking jacket. Regis Philbin’s only complaint was, “there’s not enough Ellen.” Not enough Ellen!

5 iggy

5. She adopted a dog and gave it to her hair person and then cried about it on TV.

A few months after the Oscars there was a big blow up over this dog Iggy who is adorable as you can see. There were tears and death threats and lots of “awareness” about pet adoption, which is a good thing. Plus there’s this clip of Ellen’s meltdown, which is extraordinary.

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6. She married Portia de Rossi.

In 2008, Ellen gave girlfriend of four years de Rossi a three-carat pink diamond ring and they got hitched in August. Two years later de Rossi changed her name to Portia Lee James DeGeneres. So romantic! Where are the babies?

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7. She replaced Paula Abdul on American Idol and then had the guts to bow out and admit that the show “didn’t feel like the right fit for me.”

It really didn’t. Good call, Ellen.

 8 princess

8. She found out she’s related to Princess Kate, Duchess of Cambridge.

Around the time of the big royal wedding, Ellen announced on her show she’s Kate’s cousin. It’s 15 times removed, but still. There’s no clip, but some guy in England or wherever has 572 views breaking the big news. Let’s give him some love. He’s cute. Unrelated, Ellen is Madonna’s eleventh cousin.

Ellen DeGeneres, Hillary Rodham Clinton

9. Hillary Clinton named her a Special Envoy for Global AIDS Awareness in 2011.

“I’m honored to have been chosen by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton as Special Envoy for Global AIDS awareness. The fight against AIDS is something that has always been close to my heart. And I’m happy that I can use my platform to educate people and spread hope. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go look up what ‘envoy’ means.”

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10. She posted this pic on her Instagram when Cher came on her show last year.


Bonus awesome thing:

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Last month she bought this amazing house for $40 million.

People who know these things say it may be the best house in L.A. Well of course it is. Oscar after party!

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  • booplay

    How about all the kids she’s helped out, like the little boy who was born with half a heart. Or the kids she helped to have a Christmas last year. Most of this other stuff is fickle in comparison. This site really makes gays look shallow sometimes.

  • balehead

    She can do what she wants because irregardless of her orientation…She’s whiter than white…

  • Sammy Schlipshit

    She does seem to have a heart of gold.

    Ellen has certainly found her niche with the talk show. Glad she seems have given up the stand-up work….not so funny these days. Much more polished and approachable as a talk show host….quick witted.

    Saw her performing in a bar in Monterey waaaaaay back in the early 80’s…before her first show or much name recognition.
    Broke my heart to see her smoking a cig….sure hope she has given that up.
    She was a much funnier comedian in those days.

    Later that night she showed up in the one and only gay bar in town…finally, confirmed the rumors. She sure had her pick of the litter that night. Women were just all over her. It was a heartwarming thing to see.

    Looking forward to seeing her host the Oscars.

  • Sebizzar

    Ellen is and always will be my favorite lesbian around :) If anyone says they dislike her… they might not be living on the same planet!

  • Respect4all

    @balehead: “Irregardless” of yore orientayshun, yore dummer than dum.

  • Sammy Schlipshit

    @Tracy Pope:

    Yep, that’s the place. Moved from that area back in ’95 but have heard the After Dark became a str8 place. What a pity. The bar had gone downhill anyway with too many str8 women dragging their nervous boyfriends in there for a look at the brothers/sisters.

    Since you seem to know about the place, did you ever see John Travolta at the Clock bar/restaurant with any of his ‘boyfriends’? He was brazenly open in the area.
    Merv Griffin would also show up there with rent boy in tow while blatantly claiming to still be str8.

  • 1EqualityUSA

    not taking (something) into account; regardless of.
    “child benefit is paid irrespective of income levels”
    synonyms: regardless of, without regard to/for, notwithstanding, whatever, no matter what, without consideration of

    without paying attention to the present situation; despite the prevailing circumstances.
    “they were determined to carry on regardless”
    synonyms: anyway, anyhow, in any case, nevertheless, nonetheless, despite everything, in spite of everything, even so, all the same, in any event, come what may;
    Irregardless: A word fucktards use when they try to impress.

  • Thad1527

    Don’t forget her awesome ads for JCPenney!

  • Tracy Pope

    @Sammy Schlipshit: Wow. Yes. Did see John Travolta at the Clock restaurant. I wasn’t a big fan so it never occurred to me who the other guy might be. Funny, looking back at it now…

  • Sammy Schlipshit


    While the ads were good, they somehow didn’t transfer into sales…pity the Penny these days.

  • Sammy Schlipshit


    Her talk show is a hit but her winning personality didn’t transfer into sales.
    Actually, looking back on it, I didn’t see those ads running a lot in my TV market.
    How about you? Did you see them a lot?

  • Sammy Schlipshit

    @Tracy Pope:

    Travolta showing up so casually is a real slap in the face to his wife, masseurs everywhere and all the reporters who are trying to expose his hypocrisy.

    I am guessing he is a bit more reserved these days….age will certainly subdue the sexual desires…it’s a testosterone/prostate thing…..I hate being old.

    Travolta has always been protected by the powers that be just as Rock Hudson and others were from back in the day. Those closet cases are just too much of money makers to allow the truth to be fully exposed.

    When were you in that area?
    I lived in the New Monterey area from the early 80’s until ’95.
    Was involved in local cities politics so got to see the cover-up and protection first hand. I tried to call him and others out on their double standard but was quickly dismissed and punished….in a non-corporal way.
    The protection runs wide and deep.

  • Cam

    And of course she never spent years lying and claiming to be in love with Tom Cruise.

  • Bobby Christina Crawford

    Her crossover appeal has almost made the word crossover antique.

  • Bobby Christina Crawford

    @Sebizzar: The amount of elder straight women that LOVE her is amazing….even in places like Texas.

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