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Chloe Sevigny worried about reactions to trans assassin role

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  1. Julian Morrison 12 Jul 2012, 11:18pm

    Honestly she should have been worried, and she probably should have pressured them harder to pick a trans actress. Although, the fact she even noticed it as a problem is good.

    1. By the time they offered it to her they had tried and failed to find anyone suitable. If you think about it that was only to be expected. Its a huge role, so a beginner would not likely have lasted the course. It required being seen onscreen with a dick, which many would have found very worrisome – hell, Sevigny herself found it a big problem. An Irish accent was required; to pass as female; and be able to fight. And how many would have agreed to play a sociopath?

      One T woman who auditioned boasted that she refused to answer if she was pre- or post-SRS, despite that being a crucial matter.

      Having watched the entire series in detail I – a woman of transsexual history – think Sevigny did absolutely brilliantly in the part, which is what matters. The publicity is just so much waste paper, at the end of the day.

      The character being an assassin is very worrisome though, given how few portrayals there are, and the clear and unjustified stereotype (‘Dressed to Kill’ for example).

  2. It’s good that she’s acknowledging it’s a problem that trans actors hardly ever cast as trans characters. A cis person will never know what it’s like to be trans, of the dangers trans women in particular face, of the cruelty, bullying and abuse surrounding our lives from all walks of society, even the media itself. Mostly cis actors playing trans characters will rely on stereotypical and often offensive tropes which can really damage our community. So it’s little wonder when we find out that yet another cis actor has been cast as a trans person that some of us are understandably angry. There are plenty of trans actors out there, why is it so hard to promote them or cast them?

  3. It’s the same for gay characters on tv, very few are played by gay actors. I don’t see it as a major problem as long as they are representing the issues well & doing a good job! I wouldn’t have given her the role based on her rubbish accent!

    1. a good actor is good regardless of his/her gender and sexuality, can and should take any role offered! I’m not sure about Chloe though…looking forward to see the flick first and judge :/

  4. As a gay man I found Chloe Sevigny’s performance terrific as I did everyone else in the cast. I liked her in Big Love too. And I did wonder when I saw the first episode why a transgender perfomer wasn’t playing Mia. But it worked. Well done.

  5. Anthony Bermon 13 Jul 2012, 1:34pm

    I can understand why trans people would like to see real trans actors in a role like this – but where do you draw the line? The character was also an assassin but I’m pretty sure Chloe Sevigny isn’t one in real life!

    As a gay man, I don’t feel there’s really a need for every gay role to be played by a gay actor. Although I do realise there are a lot less trans role models out there and it’s maybe more of big deal.

    1. Julian Morrison 13 Jul 2012, 6:15pm

      Right now if you want to break into Hollywood and you’re openly trans, your chances are nil. They won’t give you cis roles. They won’t even give you trans roles. If you’re a kid who’s trans and has aspirations to be an actor, will you feel any hope? if you’re a kid who’s trans and who doesn’t even know what trans is, will you see trans people and be able to say “I’m that”?

      Saying “role models” underestimates the scope of the problem. This is systematic exclusion. It’s creating a false world where trans doesn’t exist, or exists only as a freakshow, and presenting it as “the one true reality”.

      1. If you are openly, or outed trans your chances of getting almost any work are almost nil. Almost everyone in good jobs who is openly trans is trading on past privilege – which few admit. We have laws against the discrimination in the UK, and in many other countries, but they are far too new to have had much effect, and those responsible for educating about and enforcing it have less than a clue.

        But you are totally off the mark on the rest you say. There is considerable portrayal on the net and in the press. And a kid who is trans – let me tell you as woman who was exactly such a child – wants to be like adults of the other sex, not anyone at all who can be identified as T. That’s not a matter of image, its what being a transsexual child is all about. TG youth don’t reach an understanding until later.

    2. Valerie Keefe 9 Aug 2012, 7:21am

      Oh good… [cis] gay man declares himself authority on transmisogyny. Film at eleven.

  6. Julia Ford 13 Jul 2012, 3:01pm

    Could not find the right person? . They did,nt ask me.

    I truely hope she doe’s the job well.

  7. In numerous interviews with Paul Abbott about the casting issue, I’ve never heard him say he actually attempted to cast a trans woman in the role. In fact, trans actors have portrayed trans characters in many film projects around the world (in South Asia, Korea, The Philippines, and Latin America). It’s in the UK and US that trans people aren’t seen as ‘good enough’ to fill those roles. As if Chloe Sevigny is the second coming of Judy Dench!? (*mumble… look sullen… drag on cig… look down… more sullen… mumble*)

    That’s not the only issue I have with the series though. Here’s a review/commentary of the first episode:

  8. Daniel Brooks 13 Jul 2012, 7:23pm

    The prejudice found in society is mirrored in the attitudes of Hollywood towards the LGBT community. There is no valid reason for not selecting a transwoman for this role, just as there are no valid reasons for not choosing gay men and women to play gay roles. There are plenty of talented actors from the LGBT population just waiting for a part like this.

  9. Sorry just reported the above by accident. I totally agree, damn iPod buttons, too small x

  10. I find this argument a little tedious. The down side to this is that trans actors should only play Trans parts! The point is actors belong to a profession who pretend to be people that they’re not!. John Wayne wasn’t really a cowboy. Telly Savalas wasn’t really a New York Detective. Bela Lugosi wasn’t really a vampire. William Shatner wasn’t really the captain of a starship. Mel Gibson wasn’t really William Wallace. Its called Acting! The same furore erupts in Scotland whenever a non-scot portrays a Scot on film ‘There are plenty of Scots actors,why not cast one of them?’ I seem to recall when Mary Poppins was released,Dick Van Dyke was castigated for his cockney accent.And quite rightly too! Not because Van dyke was american but because his accent was rotten! What matters is the performance.A good actor should make the character convincing a bad actor wont! Naturally I’m all for the advancement of Trans actors but the daner is that they will be condemned to trans parts forever!

    1. Anyone of trans experience who was known to play a non-trans role would be attacked by some LGBT activists for betrayal, and by RadFems and religionistas as monsters (not the Lady Gaga fan sort). What producer would want that distraction?

      Anyone who trasitioned with fame-as-trans on stage or screen in mind would need to be on suicide watch pretty soon, since careers are usually brief, and what would then remain for them?

      There are women of transsexual history working in films and theatre, but they rightly just live as the sex with which they always felt they belonged.

  11. I was a little dissapointed they didn’t use a Pre op Trans woman for this role but Chloe Sevigny has done a fab job of it but i will say would we accept a white actor playing a black part ?

  12. Valerie Keefe 9 Aug 2012, 7:19am

    Fears justified. She’s been a cissexist disaster. To be fair, the producers helped.

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