Wentworth Miller has confirmed he is gay.
Wentworth Miller has confirmed he is gay. Reuters

Former Prison Break star Wentworth Miller has confirmed he is gay - to make a stand against homophobia in Russia.

The 41-year-old British-born American actor/producer talked about his sexuality in a letter sent to the St. Petersburg International Film Festival in Russia.

"Thank you for your kind invitation. As someone who has enjoyed visiting Russia in the past and can also claim a degree of Russian ancestry, it would make me happy to say yes. However, as a gay man, I must decline," Miller wrote in the letter posted on LGBT website glaad.org.

"I am deeply troubled by the current attitude toward and treatment of gay men and women by the Russian government. The situation is in no way acceptable, and I cannot in good conscience participate in a celebratory occasion hosted by a country where people like myself are being systematically denied their basic right to live and love openly.

"Perhaps, when and if circumstances improve, I'll be free to make a different choice."

GLAAD spokesman Wilson Cruz praised Miller's decision in a statement on the website.

"Wentworth's bold show of support sends a powerful message to LGBT Russians, who are facing extreme violence and persecution: you are not alone," Cruz said, "As people from across the globe continue to speak out against Russia's horrific law, more celebrities and corporations should follow his courageous lead in openly condemning Russia's anti-LGBT law."

In a previous interview in 2007, Miller had claimed he was straight.

"I'm not gay, but that rumour can't be killed," he reportedly said at the time. "I know these rumours are out there ... I'm cool with the fact that they exist, I mean this is about fantasy.

"Certain people are going to have certain fantasies, if someone wants to imagine me with a woman, or a man or one of each that's cool with me as long as you keep watching the show."