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Last Updated: Wednesday, 28 July, 2004, 10:05 GMT 11:05 UK
Simpsons to reveal gay character
The Simpsons
A Simpsons movie is planned for when the TV show finally ends
A character from The Simpsons is to be revealed as gay, sparking a mystery among fans over who it will be.

"We have a show where, to raise money, Springfield legalises gay marriage," producer Al Jean told fans at a comic book convention.

"Homer becomes a minister by going on the internet and filling out a form. A long-time character comes out of the closet, but I'm not saying who."

The last mystery Simpsons storyline involved killing off a character.

After weeks of speculation it was revealed Maude, the wife of Homer Simpson's neighbour Ned Flanders, was the unlucky victim of the cull.

Big screen

Speculation is already running rife across fan websites about who will be the mystery gay character, ranging from Mr Burns' devoted sidekick Waylon Smithers to one or both of Homer's sisters-in-law.

Simpsons creator Matt Groening joked to Comic-Con San Diego convention-goers "it's Homer".

In the episode, set to be broadcast in the US in January, Homer's hometown Springfield licenses gay marriage - a particularly hot topic in the US at the moment during election campaigning.

Groening also said plans were still afoot for a Simpsons movie but it would not be made until the TV series finally ended.

Guest stars for the next series may include rapper 50 Cent, comic actor Ray Romano and Sex and the City star Kim Cattrall.

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