3. Gene Anthony Ray
Best known in the 1980s during the dance craze, Gene Anthony Ray appeared in the film Fame and the television series that followed from 1982 to 1987.
Ray landed the role after he skipped school to audition for the film and nailed it! Though he had trouble finding regular work after the television series ended, he managed to land a few commercial roles as well as appearances in films such as Out-of-Sync and Eddie.
Widely characterized as a flamboyant partygoer, life after Fame proved to be difficult for Ray as he attempted to open a dance school in Milan that quickly failed. With his life falling apart at the seams, Ray went from sharing a flat with three porn stars to sleeping on park benches after his 1996 diagnosis as HIV positive. Avoiding all questions about his sexuality until his death in November 2003, Ray’s mother finally confirmed the rumors about her son’s disease.