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Fantastic Beasts star Eddie Redmayne leaps to the defence of trans people ‘tired’ of JK Rowling’s anti-trans missives

Emma Powys Maurice June 10, 2020

Eddie Redmayne with JK Rowling at the European premiere of "Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them" in 2015 (Samir Hussein/WireImage)

Eddie Redmayne has become the latest actor from JK Rowling’s Wizarding World to take a stand against the author’s views on trans people.

As outrage builds over the author’s statements on trans people, Redmayne – who plays Newt Scamander in Rowling’s Harry Potter prequel series Fantastic Beasts – was moved to make a public statement denouncing her views.

Redmayne told Variety: “Respect for transgender people remains a cultural imperative, and over the years I have been trying to constantly educate myself. This is an ongoing process.

“As someone who has worked with both JK Rowling and members of the trans community, I wanted to make it absolutely clear where I stand,” he continued.

“I disagree with Jo’s comments. Trans women are women, trans men are men and non-binary identities are valid. I would never want to speak on behalf of the community but I do know that my dear transgender friends and colleagues are tired of this constant questioning of their identities, which all too often results in violence and abuse.

“They simply want to live their lives peacefully, and it’s time to let them do so.”

Eddie Redmayne
Eddie Redmayne educated himself on trans issues after being cast in The Danish Girl (Michael Buckner/Getty)

Eddie Redmayne joins list of Harry Potter stars berating JK Rowling.

Eddie Redmayne has previously faced criticism for accepting the role of a trans woman, Lili Elbe, in The Danish Girl. The film depicted her transition and journey in becoming the first woman to undergo gender affirming surgery.

Although he initially defended the casting, he reached out to members of the transgender community during filming and has since become an outspoken advocate for trans rights, calling for more cis people to be educated on the subject.

The actor — who will appear in a third Fantastic Beasts film in November 2021 — joins the growing list of Harry Potter stars publicly siding against JK Rowling, including Daniel Radcliffe, Evanna Lynch, Katie Leung and Chris Rankin.

“Transgender women are women. Any statement to the contrary erases the identity and dignity of transgender people and goes against all advice given by professional health care associations who have far more expertise on this subject matter than either Jo or I,” Radcliffe wrote in a lengthy statement.

Addressing the thousands of upset Harry Potter fans who have publicly made their disappointment clear, he added: “To all the people who now feel that their experience of the books has been tarnished or diminished, I am deeply sorry for the pain these comments have caused you.

“I really hope that you don’t entirely lose what was valuable in these stories to you.”

 

 

More: Eddie Redmayne, Fantastic Beasts and where to Find Them, Harry Potter, JK Rowling, the danish girl

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