Eddie Redmayne covers Out, discusses trans rights as ‘a civil rights movement’


We’ve already been discussing this year’s Oscar races and who will be a contender and what films will disappoint, but I think it’s a pretty safe bet that Eddie Redmayne is going to be going through his second awards season in two years’ time. Eddie stars in The Danish Girl, which will be released later this year after making its way through some of the film festivals. Eddie plays another real person: the artist and transgender icon Lili Elbe. Even the production stills are haunting and striking – as I said, I think this is another sure thing for Eddie. Would he really get back-to-back Oscars? Probably not. But he could totally get back-to-back Best Actor Oscar nominations. Anyway, this is the beginning of Eddie’s campaign and promotional tour. He sat down for a lovely interview with Out Magazine. Some highlights:

He keeps his Oscar on a side table: “I’ll come back and sit on the sofa and — argh! You check that it feels real.” He isn’t quite sure how to go about getting it insured. “I haven’t yet. I probably shouldn’t say that, right? But I don’t know what its value is. You can’t sell them — you’re not allowed to. So when you call the insurance people, what do you say it’s worth?”

He’s not comfortable with his Old Etonian privilege: “I try to do little things to find a way to help. But really, it is just about having to accept that I have been exceptionally lucky. [Eton] really is about friendship. You live intensively with these people for five years, from the age of 13 to 18, and those friendships are pretty solid.”

On the first time he read the script for The Danish Girl: “I found it profoundly moving. I knew nothing about it going in. It felt like it was a piece about authenticity and love and the courage it takes to be yourself.”

On his feelings on his own masculinity: “I suppose it depends on what you think of as masculine and feminine. I was musical, and I was into theater and arts, but I was also into sports, so I had quite a broad spectrum. I can also totally see that other people see a femininity in me.”

On receiving advice from the trans community on upcoming role: “People were so kind and generous with their experience, but also so open. Virtually all of the trans men and women I met would say ‘Ask me anything.’ They know that need for cisgender people to be educated. I felt like, I’m being given this extraordinary experience of being able to play this women, but with that comes this responsibility of not only educating myself but hopefully using that to educate [an audience]. Gosh, it’s delicate. And complicated.

On Caitlyn Jenner and current conversation surrounding the trans community: “I was in New York when the Vanity Fair cover came out and I was reading The New York Times, and all of the op-ed pieces that were being written about it. The dialogue was so rich and full, with everyone having opinions. I absolutely salute her courage. Hers is a very specific story, and it’s one that shouldn’t stand for everybody’s. But it is amazing what she’s gone through and how she’s done it. It’s a civil rights movement.”

What the role of Lili Elbe has taught him about gender: “That it’s fluid, I suppose. And also that it needn’t be labeled. My greatest ignorance when I started was that gender and sexuality were related. And that’s one of the key things I want to hammer home to the world: You can be gay or straight, trans man or woman, and those two things are not necessarily aligned.”

[From Out Magazine]

The Out Magazine piece is a good read if someone has qualms about a cisgendered man playing an iconic transgender woman as well. There is an emphasis on how much research Eddie has done over the years on gender issues and LGBTQ issues. He’s a long-time ally and he took the work seriously, and he met, interviewed and researched many living transgender women ahead of playing Lili. Some of those women are quoted in the piece and while they aren’t completely thrilled with the idea of Eddie playing Lili, they all met him and vouched for his character and heart. He seemed to have come into the project with a lot of humility and an open mind and that counts for a lot.


Photos courtesy of Out Magazine.

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31 Responses to “Eddie Redmayne covers Out, discusses trans rights as ‘a civil rights movement’”

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  1. QQ says:

    I Like you Burnt Looking Boy, I really do Like you and your Clothes and your nice interviews about learning about other people’s Plights!

    • mimif says:

      Lmao burnt looking boy, the hell is wrong with you. 😂

    • Anna says:

      LOL now that you say it I do see the “burnt” look. Zac Efron used to have that look too.

      I wish they had cast a transwoman instead in this role instead of a cis man. I know it’s bothered some people in the Trans* community

      • Jules says:


        It illustrates he really doesn’t get or care about the movement beyond a superficial level.

      • Beth No. 2 says:

        The majority of the story takes place when Einar Wegener is still, physically speaking, a man – i.e. pre-operation. Casting a trans woman sounds great from a political angle but I’m not sure how it would work out in reality; she’d have to stop taking her hormones to look and sound male, etc.

  2. jesb says:

    I was recently watching a tv show from the 90s and how “brave” they were for having a gay character as a guest star on one episode. It was so new. The gay community had come a long way in the last 20 years. I feel lucky to be able to witness another civil rights movement in my lifetime, that of trans rights. It’s a very diverse world we live in, I’m happy to see people’s minds grow and things that were once hidden so a part of the mainstream. Say what you will about Caitlyn but her coming out has definitely helped to make the conversation more mainstream.

  3. Grace says:

    Nicely done, Eddie! I found his interviews always a delight to read.

  4. Beth No. 2 says:

    It’s worth reading the OUT article in full.

    I absolutely HATED the sappy drippy Theory of Everything, but I thought he was outstanding in it. Well-deserved Oscar win.

    He comes across as earnest, thoughtful and articulate in the interview, and responded well to what could have been a minefield of a topic. I like his point about acknowledging his femininity and that he didn’t try to play up the tired Hollywood machismo nonsense. And he seems to really have no airs about him. So rare to see a talented, well-spoken actor in an era of cheap 15-minute famehos and divas. Well done Eddie.

    • Kiki says:

      I have to say he is very earnest and well spoken. The humility of this interview is very refreshing.

  5. Hannah says:

    He’s Comes across as thoughtful, humble, intelligent, charming. I think I like him the best out of all those odd looking posh Brits (cumber, hiddleston et all) that are so in vogue at the moment.

  6. JENNA says:

    I can already tell that he’s going to be in our faces 24/7 until February.

  7. Lucy says:

    He’s so lovely. I wonder if he and ASkars know each other!

  8. Mia4S says:

    Before I get shallow and superficial let me just say I think he’s a very talented actor and seems nice…

    Of all the pale Brit heartthrob set, he’s the only one who I just don’t get. I don’t find him attractive at all.

    Cumberbatch in Sherlock mode? I see it.
    Hiddleston not in Loki mode? If I squint, sure.

    This guy does not work for me at all, talented though he may be.

    • Hannah says:

      Omg! So funny I just said the opposite! He’s the one I get. He’s genuinely seems intelligent enough to get that he comes from a place of great privilege which he acknowledges unlike cumber, he just comes across as likeable and humble.
      I like that he married someone outside the business and never dates any Hollywood starlets and genuinely don’t play that game, unlike hiddleston.

      If you are just talking about looks, he’s the prettiest of them, I think he used to be a model. I just don’t find any of them the least bit sexy. The only sexy Brit out of that crop is Tom hardy.

      • Mia4S says:

        Oh I definitely don’t argue with personality and talent, and I feel like I should find him the most attractive of the lot but…nope. Ascetically he just doesn’t work for me. Never does. (I don’t think much of the other two on that level either but occasionally I see it). I guess the “heart” wants what it wants. ;-)

      • Beth No. 2 says:

        I don’t find Eddie sexy at all; in fact his eager puppy personality makes him definitively UNsexy. But he is talented; I enjoy reading his interviews and I find him pretty likable. I can, however, see why he’s a model – he has rather unusual features, lotsa freckles and those pouty fish lips which I imagine can be striking for a photoshoot.

        But yaasss Tom Hardy! I’m mostly agnostic towards Hiddleston; he was sexy as Prince Hal and Coriolanus and that’s about it. Cumberbatch is just a huge NO; not into intergalactic spawning.

      • Hannah says:

        Eddie mostly has boyish charm and the eager puppy thing is part of that. Hiddleston is a bit of an eager puppy too but in a more thirsty way less self deprecating way imo. Neither of them are sexy. Hardy though… Sigh

      • xpreson says:

        Hanna have you seen him in Pilars of the Earth? It might be his character there or something else.. but I found him super hot in that miniseries.

  9. Enya says:

    He said on the interview that he he prepared for the role for three years but he signed last year for the movie. Before it was Kidman in his role. LOL

  10. vauvert says:

    He sounds intelligent, genuine, thoughtful and just all around nice. Not to mention super talented and good looking. (This is how you put words together Bendy, see how it’s done? Not the word salads we were served daily last year.)
    I know it’s unlikely he would win again but if he does justice to the role, he should definitely get the nomination. And I am glad those stories are being told, I had no idea about this until he signed up to play the role. Also look forward to his Scalamander franchise role next year. Guy is on fire, isn’t he? Hope he stays the same lovely person inside and out.

  11. Lilacflowers says:

    Nice interview. The Eton boys must get so tired about being asked about a school they left over a decade ago. Nobody asks Matt Damon and Ben Affleck about Cambridge, Rindge & Latin

    • FingerBinger says:

      Does Cambridge ,Rindge ,and Latin have the same prestige as Eton? If it doesn’t then that’s why they aren’t asked about it.

      • Lilacflowers says:

        My point is that others are not asked about their high schools. As for prestigious schools, Damon went to Harvard, when was the last time he was asked about that? BTW, CR&L has produced e.e. cummings, several Oscar winners, not just Ben and Matt, a NBA hall of famer, a few Nobel prize winners, several terrorists, and the sculptor of the Crazy Horse memorial.

  12. Rachel says:

    I can never remember his name. When my husband and I were talking about movies, he brought one up and said Eddie Redmayne is in it. I’m like “Who??” He replies “The guy you always says needs some chapstick”. I stand by that. Except, on further inspection, it would appear he needs a commercial sized tub of moisturizer as well.

  13. ali.hanlon says:

    He talks about his privilege great!

    But his lack of understanding about the civil rights movement is annoying.

    Trans rights are a separate issue

    • Wilma says:

      I’m not sure I agree with you, but maybe it’s the way you put it. If you’re referring to black issues and trans issues being different, I agree with you, but everytime a citizen does not have equal rights or has their rights trampled on based on race, gender, sexual preference, disability etc. it is, in fact, a civil rights issue.

  14. Mary Carol says:

    I thought it was well known he is bi. He loves his wife very much, but he runs with the boys, still.

  15. Kit says:

    See, here’s the thing: this is pretty hypocritical. You can’t say you understand the struggle about a role you took that should have gone to a trans woman.

    I’m usually not like this about casting, I understand it’s just acting, but the problems regarding trans men and women in casting are still pretty severe.

  16. Jonathan says:

    FFS just cast a trans person in a trans person role. Not a cis gendered female or male for once. It’s like gender tourism or something, drives me insane.

    Redmayne does almost nothing for me- which is unusual considering I’m attracted to a very large variety of men. I like his voice, though, a LOT.