"If Julia Roberts were gay, I think it would be harder. She's an ingenue," the Emmy winner, 50, tells Ellen DeGeneres in an interview airing Wednesday on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
"So, you're saying Julia Roberts is gay?" DeGeneres replies with mock surprise.
"That's what I'm saying. Right here on this show," Lynch says with a laugh. "She won't admit it. I'm here to tell you she's gay. You're welcome, Julia."
All joking aside, Lynch – who married Lara Embry, a psychologist, earlier this year – says coming out was a challenge for her – more so in her personal life than in her career. "I was more closeted in my life when I was younger," she says. "I used to lay in bed and go, 'How will I come out, or will I come out?' "
And in fact, it was DeGeneres's decision to come out – on the famous "Yep, I'm Gay" cover of Time magazine in 1997 – that gave Lynch the courage to follow suit.
"You were at the height of your fame and you came out," Lynch says. "And that just blazed a trail for me. It really did. It made it so much easier for me, what you did."