Eddie Redmayne says his trans role in ‘The Danish Girl’ was ‘a mistake’

The Academy Award-winning actor agrees that Danish painter Lili Elbe, one of the early recipients of sex reassignment surgery, should have been portrayed by a trans actress.

British actor Eddie Redmayne says playing a trans character in the 2015 film The Danish Girl was a mistake.

Redmayne, who played transgender artist Lili Elbe in the film, said he wouldn’t take that job if it was offered to him now. The role won him a Best Actor nomination.

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However, there has been some controversy over Redmayne’s casting in the film as critics felt the role should have been portrayed by a trans actress. And The Theory of Everything star agrees.

“No, I wouldn’t take it on now. I made that film with the best intentions, but I think it was a mistake… The bigger discussion about the frustrations around casting is because many people don’t have a chair at the table. There must be a leveling, otherwise we are going to carry on having these debates,” the actor told the Sunday Times when asked whether he would play the role again if he were offered it now.

The actor also stated the same earlier in a 2018 video for GQ called ‘Eddie Redmayne Breaks Down His Most Iconic Characters’. “Just before our film came out, Caitlyn Jenner had been on the cover of Vanity Fair and Laverne Cox was on the cover of TIME magazine, so we felt that it was perhaps time for trans people to be telling their stories. There was a certain amount of backlash which I felt from that, which I agreed with.”

The Oscar-winning actor currently stars in a new production of Cabaret at London’s Playhouse Theatre.

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