Here’s The Real Story of How Oscar Nominee Jared Leto Got Called Out for Transmisogyny At The Virtuosos Awards

Jared Leto made news and incited discussion in queer circles for his portrayal of Rayon, a trans woman, in Dallas Buyers Club when it came out months ago. Many found the fact of a cis man portraying a trans woman fundamentally offensive, even before Rayon’s less than empowered storyline was taken into account. Leto made the situation worse when his speech at the Golden Globes centered on anatomy and waxing, trivializing actual trans women and their physical realities. Most recently, Leto has been in the news for being “heckled” at the Virtuosos Awards in Santa Barbara; news reports claim that an “unidentified woman” “heckled” Leto during the awards ceremony when she said “Transmisogyny doesn’t deserve an award.” The truth behind those reports, however, is more complicated; there wasn’t just one person speaking out, and they weren’t a woman. And while mainstream news reports have figured Leto as something of a victor in the exchange, with People championing him for “spinning heckling into a serious discussion of transgender roles,” that version of events fails once again to take into account the experiences of actual trans and gendernonconforming people, who were there at the event and have spoken to Autostraddle about what transpired.

Jared Leto playing Rayon in Dallas Buyer's Club

Jared Leto playing Rayon in Dallas Buyer’s Club

Taylor is a 19-year-old trans woman who attended the Virtuosos Awards with genderfluid friends Oliver and Jacqueline. The three friends had decided to attend the awards after seeing Dallas Buyers Club and feeling deep frustration with the character of Rayon, who is saddled with a tragic storyline that involves being saved by a straight cis man, and seems to have no agency or character development. Taylor notes that “the character [of Rayon] was originally meant to be a drag queen,” something that seems backed up by an interview Leto gave in December where he said “[director] Jean-Marc may have seen Rayon more as a drag queen or someone who enjoys pushing a gender envelope or dressing up in women’s clothing,” which may have been a factor in Rayon’s refusal to correct anyone in the film when they referred to her as a man, and the lack of any narrative features that would clearly identify her as a trans woman. Rayon’s portrayal and Leto’s subsequent accolades for performing her motivated Taylor, Oliver and Jacqueline to attend the Virtuosos Awards to engage with Leto in person.

This was the context in which Oliver said “transmisogyny doesn’t deserve an award.” When asked “What do you mean by that?” by Leto, Oliver responded with “You don’t deserve an award for portraying a trans woman, because you’re a man.” Jacqueline added that “Historically cisgender people always play trans people, and when they do they win awards for it.” In subsequent media coverage of the event, “cisgender people” was reported as “straight people.”

Despite news reports, neither Oliver nor Jacqueline are women — both are genderfluid, and both were misgendered in subsequent news reports (which also seem to have conflated them into one person, and/or confused them with Taylor, who is a woman). Oliver says this is a reminder that their “sense of safety is not a priority, [their] needs for respect are ‘too difficult.'” Jacqueline says that “to have [misgendering] happen on this level is a reminder of the importance of trans activism, and the action that we took at the awards ceremony.”

Various reports have quoted Leto as responding with:

“Because I’m a man, I don’t deserve to play that part?… So you would hold a role against someone who happened to be gay or lesbian — they can’t play a straight part? Then you’ve made sure people that are gay, people that aren’t straight, people like the Rayons of the world, would never have the opportunity to turn the tables and explore parts of that art.”

Leto in Santa Barbara

Leto in Santa Barbara

This question and its implications are flawed on a few levels. Oliver tells Autostraddle:

“We can’t keep comparing being gay and being trans, even though many people are both. It erases the trans struggle, keeps it invisible by lumping it in with LGBT. So his statement is flawed for the comparison to straightness (when we specifically said cisgender, a word most cisgender people have never heard – because of the normalizing of their identities), AND the comparison to being gay. It is not easy to be gay/queer, it is NOT EASY TO BE TRANS, but we cannot compare both of those two… The point is, HIS gender is important to the perception of the role. He is perpetuating the “man in a dress” trope. He’s performing the role of a drag queen, but “slapping on the fallacious label of ‘trans woman’” (as Taylor said). And his comparison is a false equivalency – it assumes that we live in a utopian world where cissexism or other forms of oppression don’t exist.”

After the awards ceremony, Taylor, Jacqueline and Oliver were allowed to speak to Leto privately — as long as they were able to promise that they would “calm down” and didn’t have an “agenda.” Although the friends report that their personal exchange with Leto was amicable and ended positively, it still didn’t result in Leto’s becoming more receptive to or engaged in trans women’s own experiences or feedback on his work. Taylor says, “After my interactions with him, I have to say that I don’t think he’s particularly educated on trans issues, or even that he really follows them.” And after the evening was over, the public conversation was stuck right back where it’s been for ages: media coverage was about the “angry trans people” who overreacted to a well-intentioned star. It’s both patronizing and incorrect, allowing the public to dismiss these activists while avoiding their actual message. As Jacqueline says, “It’s a form of silencing to call people from a non-dominant group “angry”. It’s a way of dismissing them as irrational… Yes, we are angry, and that anger should be empathized with, not dismissed.”

Given that Leto has expressed thanks for “the Rayons of the world,” it’s frustrating that when real-life trans women and genderfluid people have spoken up, their feelings have been dismissed and misquoted. Much like Rayon’s storyline, edited and packaged into something serviceable to mainstream cis media, the nuanced and culturally relevant concerns of these activists have been labeled as complaints of “angry trans people” and tossed aside. Taylor says, “Well, we are angry about the way in which trans women were misrepresented in the film. And we are angry about the way in which we’ve been misrepresented in the press. And we are angry at Jared’s ignorance regarding trans issues, considering his role and position. But I don’t think that any of us really despise Jared, or went there expecting or intending to “heckle him”… I mean, we had a conversation with him, I hugged him. I think it’s a trope that trans people are needlessly “angry” and unreasonable, or that they can’t get along with cis people, and the coverage so far has really exacerbated that notion.”

Jared Leto is just one person, and obviously the reasons behind the deeply problematic portrayal of Rayon (and the fact that Leto was offered the role, and has received such accolades for playing a relatively minor supporting part) are large and systemic. The problems with the way this incident developed are systemic as well — the fact that a cis man is granted more of a platform to speak on trans issues and representation than trans people, for instance. But these institutionalized cultural tendencies can be checked to some degree when deconstructed in public conversation, and when we choose to take seriously those who do the deconstructing — when we choose to grant legitimacy to the “angry” people doing the “heckling,” and not just the people wearing suits on a stage.

In their meeting, Jacqueline asked Leto to “actually mention trans people and our struggles in subsequent awards acceptance speeches” — with the Oscars coming this Sunday, we may have a chance to see if Leto has taken this criticism to heart. Regardless of his individual actions, however, the larger systems of news and entertainment media still clearly have a lot to learn.

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Originally from Boston, MA, Rachel now lives in the Midwest. Topics dear to her heart include bisexuality, The X-Files and tacos. Her favorite Ciara video is probably "Ride," but if you're only going to watch one, she recommends "Like A Boy." You can follow her on twitter and instagram.

Rachel has written 1142 articles for us.


  1. Actually, I really could care less who Leto thanks or doesn’t thank. Trans people are supposed to feel validated because he takes two seconds to mumble something? This is clearly a guy who has had his ass kissed waaay too much. At this point I’m just very sick of him, unimpressed with his film (which is full of historical misrepresentations) and I hope someone else wins. And this account of the film festival protest isn’t a surprise to me because it was painfully obvious from the multitude of news stories and their slant how it was basically PR and “Jared vs. the unappreciative transgenders.”

    • I completely agree with you. I am happy the story of these brave activists was told on Autostraddle. This group of friends deciding to confront a celebrity face to face is bold, but why we hang off of every word cis-celebrities say is beyond me. Especially with the historical lack of fucks given for any one experiencing oppression in general.

      • “Especially with the historical lack of fucks given for any one experiencing oppression in general.” If you’re still talking about celebrities here, you’re aware that this is a completely baseless statement and this history is really not that hard to reference?

        Hollywood & celebrities have been a part of American culture for barely 100 years. In that time, not only have many of them been the victims of oppression themselves (remember McCarthyism?), but many of them have started and/or champion causes to help where it’s needed. New Orleans, Invisible Children, Haiti, every Live Aid event ever, the Concert for Bangladesh, etc.

        Maybe instead of aggressively looking for any difference between you and cisgendered people and exacerbating it to the point that none of them want to hear your argument/opinion/story, you could try to find some common ground, build a relationship based on that, and then figure out how to bridge your divides (and a hint: I’d take my suggestion, because your current approach sucks).

        • (and a hint: I’d take my suggestion, because your current approach sucks).

          Oh thank you, O Enlightened One, for showing us the error of our ways!!!!!!!! You truly have shown us all how we should act; how foolish we have been!!!!!

          Or maybe you could stop being rude & cisplaining & derailing & stop acting like your opinion means so much more than anyone else’s, because anyone else needs to have footnotes to back themselves up, & get off of this site. Bye.

    • “This is clearly a guy who has had his ass kissed waaay too much.” Proof, or terrible argument.

      “At this point I’m just very sick of him, unimpressed with his film” Oh, is that the proof?

      “(which is full of historical misrepresentations)” Such as?

      “and I hope someone else wins” And this is where you lose everyone.

      If you don’t want to come off as whiny, then I suggest that you stop being whiny. This is NOT to say that there aren’t tons of legitimate grievances trans people have and are discussing, debating, and arguing. Or, go ahead and keep complaining the way that you are, because that seems to be working so well.

      • Mark, I’d say your problem might be that you’re treating an opinion as an argument. Sorry if you were looking for high school debate club, but people are allowed to express opinions here without offering iron-clad proof and a reference page. Also, if it wasn’t painfully obvious that you’ve just set up an account here for the express purpose of telling one of our members that her opinion isn’t valid, I’d tell you to take a glance at GinaPDX’s former comments regarding DBC; in them she repeatedly offers examples of the ways in which the movie perpetuates historical misrepresentations of trans* folks. Why should she have to repeat herself? Why don’t you take the time to educate yourself instead?

        • In other words, if this is your idea of being an ally, you’re doing it wrong. Didn’t we just have this conversation with Piers Morgan?

    • YES! I haven’t seen Dallas Buyers Club yet, and honestly I don’t think I want to eaither, I met Jared Leto last year when I was cast in a part in his band’s music video for “Up in the Air” and honestly, he pissed me off. he treated everyone on the set who wasn’t “beautiful” or “rich” like shit. he even was rude to his own band members and went out of his way to call the males in the video “pussies” because they werent being as intimidating as them and flirted with most of the women, while ignoring the rest of us. He even decided to go from a scene that was supposed to be “street” and “hipster” to making us all strip down and go for a more sexual approach. I didn’t mind being sexualized, it was whatever but it was the fact that at least 95% of us were fans of his band and yet he barely let us have a photo with him at the end and stood of very stiffly from us and refused to smile. Jared is a good actor and musician, but he most definitely is used to having his ass kissed.

  2. Thanks for the great article and sharing the stroy of the people who were there and called him out. Nothing about this is too surprising but I appreciate knowing a bit more on it.

  3. I just rolled my eyes so hard I’m pretty sure I popped a blood vessel. When will the cis-spailning end?

  4. Thank you so much for publishing this story. Honestly, it wasn’t the fact of the film’s existence or how cartoonishly bad it’s portrayal of trans women was, nor even the fact that Leto was an entitled, self-important chode that upset me so much. It was that the entire international media machine was kissing his ass for it non-stop, fawning over his “bravery”. It made me sick to my stomach to feel like I was the only person seeing how appropriative and condescending it all was.

  5. This is really interesting. I’m not sure it’s really Leto’s fault that he was given the role, and he’s not responsible for the thinking behind that move in the first place (i.e, general societal ignorance in trans issues), but it is disappointing that it sounds like he didn’t bother to really educate himself in all of the history and implications of the character. That kind of smacks of lazy acting (although I did think he played the role well).

  6. Thank you for sharing this. I’ve been following the updates on this after the incredibly problematic depiction of trans*ness, and this just about synthesized all of my feelings. Though, that said, I wonder if Jared Leto’s shown or been trans-misogynistic? I don’t quite see how his responses are trans-misognyistic, but they reek of cis privilege and lots of ignorance. It’s unfortunate given the fact that he’s trying to say that he can act a trans person (like people can act other characters of different sexualities), while we’d never say white people can don blackface.

  7. Re: “cisgender, a word most cisgender people have never heard – because of the normalizing of their identities”…

    I attended a very queer, very liberal college in the midwest.
    I was active in multiple queer organizations on campus.
    I have a degree in gender and women’s studies.
    I am queer. My now-ex was in the process of transitioning when we were together.
    I NEVER heard or saw the word “cisgender” in all that time.

    Why? I graduated in 1999.
    Where did I learn it? This site. Maybe 5 years ago.
    Sometimes, what is one person’s cissexism (yep, never heard that word until just now) is another person’s I-am-a-generation-ahead-of-you-and-literally-don’t-know-what-you’re-talking-about.

    Just to historically situate myself, at the time I’m speaking of, there was no asterisk after ‘trans,’ and it was also considered normal in the queer community to use the word ‘trannie’ in an entirely positive light.

    • You’re the exception that proves the rule though. The large majority of people haven’t heard the word “cisgender” and if they were to hear it, it wouldn’t matter because they are incapable of understanding it. (i.e. why should we need a new special word when we already have words such as “woman,” “man,” “normal,” “real,” “genetic,” etc.) That’s how most folks look at it. It’s not that they haven’t heard the particular word “cisgender” or “cissexism”. . .it’s that they haven’t heard of the concept that the words describes, and if someone were to explain the concept to them, it either wouldn’t make any sense to them or they would become hostile and defensive about it. You’re just an edge case in my opinion. As far as I can tell, most people who are capable of understanding the word have already heard it at this point (the main exception to this, I guess, would be small children).

      • I think it’s dependent upon where you live. I have serious doubts that most people have heard the word here in this [not highly educated like Iowa City, not cool like Chicago, not tree-hugging like Madison] part of the Midwest. Have the college kids? Probably. Have the Gen Xers? Not so much.

        It also depends on what circles you hang out in (if you even have time/energy to hang out after work). Most of my college friends moved away. When you don’t have a tight group of rowdy, political queers to hang out with on a daily (or even yearly) basis, it’s harder to hear about things.

        To bring this back to Jared Leto: He’s straight. He likely doesn’t hang with a queer posse. He didn’t exactly study critical theory before he dropped out of college. And he’s 42 years old. It’s reasonable to expect he’s never had the occasion- or, yes, the need- to know about trans issues on his life path. It appears he did try to do some research to prepare for this role. Clearly, it wasn’t on any sort of deep level- but I wouldn’t expect that from a middle-aged, straight white guy with a high school education. He didn’t educated himself enough because he himself isn’t educated enough to realize he needed to do more.

        • OK, sure, I don’t disagree with any of that. Most people don’t know shit about trans issues, except for some inaccurate stereotypes they’ve maybe picked up from Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, Jerry Springer, or possibly the Dallas Buyer’s Club. Or just random jokes they make with their friends about freaks like me. I wasn’t claiming a lot of people had heard the word “cisgender.” I’m just saying that for most of the ones who haven’t. . .well, they have a whole lot more problems than not knowing that one word. Like being indoctrinated in a whole value system that makes them think their gender is normal and natural where I’m a freak. It’s not a matter of them needing to catch up to the right lingo. Their whole worldview and way of seeing themselves is fucked.

        • “but I wouldn’t expect that from a middle-aged, straight white guy with a high school education”

          His education is irrelevant… there are “queer-positive” highly educated people who are just as trans-ignorant and transmisogynistic, if not more. (and, btw, I’m more than 20+ years older than you and graduated from college in 1977). If you cared, if you bothered to care, you could have easily found it out on this thing called the Internet. See, barring people who can’t afford Internet access no one gets a cheap pass for their ignorance and laziness anymore. Welcome to the 21st century, that excuse is over.

          But this is EXACTLY why having cis people lumbering along trying to play trans people is no longer acceptable to many in the trans community. Why them hiring some trans “consultant” to teach a cis actor all about being trans is so shallow and exploitive… basically trying to buy off a community. And why we need to make noise about this issue… regardless of the supposed intentions and goodwill of the producers, directors and casting people. And btw, I can name several Hollywood films from the 1990s which employed trans performers in key roles including those directed by obscure directors like Sidney Lumet and Clint Eastwood (that radical queer).

          By contrast, here’s Jean Marc Vallee, the DBC’s director, basically telling an interviewer (who knew more than he did) that there supposedly are no trans actors. So what excuses are you offering for him?

    • In other words, no this isn’t just new lingo that people haven’t caught up to yet. In a society that wasn’t bigoted against trans folks, some word equivalent to “cisgender” would have already been around for hundreds of years, would have been widely used, and would be considered basic vocab along the lines of “short,” “blonde,” “skinny,” etc. The fact that the only way trans people can talk about our oppression and who are oppressors are is to use weird-ass jargon that no one has heard of and no one can understand IS evidence that there is a “normalizing of the identities” of cisgender people. Their identities are normal; ours are weird and freaky. Therefore, we get oppressed. It’s two sides of the same coin. If we lived in a society where this wasn’t the case, our entire language around gender would be different and would have evolved differently.

      • Oh, I’m not debating that our society has codified what it deems normal into it’s lexicon. I’m simply positing that yes, it really IS new lingo. No, seriously. It really, really is. I’ve tried looking up the origins or the first appearance of the term. I found someone stating she coined it in 1995 on usenet- the prehistoric all-text “internet” that was used before the internet was actually a thing. In the English-speaking academic literature, I haven’t yet found a citation that predates 2006.

        • Well no shit, Sherlock. Of course, it’s new lingo. What you’re saying is just a derail. “iPhone” is also new lingo and yet most people in the United States seem to have at least some conception of what an iPhone is. The problem isn’t that the lingo around trans people’s oppression is new, it’s that people look down on trans people and don’t give a fuck about us. The word “cisgender” could have around being used by trans folks on the margins of society for like 500 years and most people still wouldn’t know what it meant. Because they just don’t care.

    • Congrats on not paying attention to shit after college, I guess? I’m not sure how this is supposed to vindicate anyone.

    • We aren’t in 1999. You know it is not okay here and now for people who aren’t DMAB trans to use transmysoginist slurs. Yet you still did.

  8. *shrugs* I figure I should just get used to this. With more trans women out these days and with slightly levels of acceptance and rights and whatnot for us, we’re probably going to be entering a historical period where it’s cool to pretend to care about trans women and appropriate our experience. Similar things have happened with other oppressed groups in the past–it’s often a side effect of a group making social progress for themselves. It becomes more fashionable for the oppressor to be a fake ally or an appropriator than a proud hater. I see the Dallas Buyer’s Club and Jared Leto and the success they’ve had as an step in that evolution.

    • To reply to your comment above (“What you’re saying is just a derail. “iPhone” is also new lingo and yet most people in the United States seem to have at least some conception of what an iPhone is.”) which I can’t reply to for some reason:

      An overwhelming number of Americans have iPhones. iPhones are part of our imagistic lexicon- they are in advertisements and commercials and television shows.

      An overwhelming number of Americans do not personally interact with trans folks. The trans community does not appear in advertisements or commercials or many television shows.

      This is not a derail. This is factual. You cannot expect Joe Schmoe in Peoria to know or care deeply about something which he has never personally experienced. Something which has barely registered as a blip on his radar.

      Re: “The word “cisgender” could have around being used by trans folks on the margins of society for like 500 years and most people still wouldn’t know what it meant. Because they just don’t care.”

      Actually, it was used c. 100 yrs ago in a German document.
      And I guess I just have a lot more faith in the goodness potential of humanity. I believe that the more people see and hear about trans issues, and the more they have the chance to interact with the trans community, the more people are going to understand and be genuinely interested. It’s about visibility. Just like it has been for LGB folks. Yes, yes, there I go drawing parallels between the trans community and the queer community. Because such a parallel exists.

      Clearly your nihilistic viewpoint doesn’t support this. To each his own.

      And your venom (“no shit, Sherlock”) towards me is entirely unnecessary. Unless you want to alienate someone who’s on your side. In which case, carry on with the salvo.
      Over and out.

      • The tone argument is no more appropriate when talking with a trans woman than it would be speaking with a cis woman. We have the right to be angry that we are marginalized and ignored, and to expect people to use language however new and obscure that respects our fundamental dignity and humanity. Polite requests for basic human rights are not how this stuff works, and yet with each successive wave of movements for rights and recognition, there will be people who benefited from the last who tell the next ‘you just need to stop being so angry, you’re being irrational, nobody is going to take you seriously.’

        • I love this exchange so much. It’s actually better than a whole, funded anthropological study of the queer academia environment.

      • “Unless you want to alienate someone who’s on your side. In which case, carry on with the salvo.”

        The implication here is “I’m threatening not to oppose your oppression anymore because I didn’t like your tone.” Maybe you just meant “I will be upset, and it’s mean to upset people” and not “I will no longer oppose your oppression,” but in that case, why would it matter that you’re on the same side? The only reason it makes sense to invoke that you’re an aspiring ally in this context is to suggest that an ally mentality/activity on your part could be revoked. And that’s an ugly threat to make. Injustice is injustice regardless of whether someone in the group that’s being victimized offended you on the Internet.

    • As I have pointed out on various threads, there was a film from 1990 (Q&A) directed by Sidney Lumet which cast a trans woman performer in a key role (and yes, there were issues with how she was presented, but still…). In the late 90s, Clint Eastwood directed a film version of the hit book “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil” and cast an African American trans woman in a key role (basically, playing a fictionalized version of herself, since she was fictionally represented in the book as well). Now listen to this interview (on the Canadian radio program ‘Q’) with DBC’s director Jean Marc Vallee when he smugly declares there aren’t any transgender actors.

      No please, this is not any conceivable kind of step forward. And Leto winning the Oscar just means more cis men will be cast as trans women (nothing guarantees repeat behavior in Hollywood like success) no matter how silly and absurd his performance will look 5-10 years from now.

  9. Is rayon a trans woman? The movie never says and everyone, including Rayons boyfriend, used male pronouns.

    • They marketed it as such, and Leto has described the role as such (once, somewhere, since then he seems to avoid if at all possible to even acknowledge that we exist as any kind of cogent group). The only difference between this and a gag in a shitty Adam Sandler movie is that instead of degrading our existence to make straight peopel laugh, it appropriates our struggles to make a bunch of straight people feel good.

    • No offense meant (even though your post is a derail of the thread) but your film really feels like a knock-off of 1991’s ‘Vegas in Space’ starring drag queen Doris Fish. Personally, just speaking for myself, my interest in 2014 at seeing self-conscious camp mixed up with the trans community is pretty much zero. One opinion.

      • Gina: There’s a few vague parallels between our films, but actually more difference than sameness. Our strength is more tied to the ‘campy’ acting, cheesy home-made props and the film’s B&W attitude :) :)

        The film’s info is on my IMDb profile:

  10. Would anyone be calling our transfer commentors whine bitches if say, we flipped this story to “white actor portrays black man”? Cause seriously folks, casting a cis person as a trans person is THAT offensive to me – and I’m cisgendered. Grow a pair and stop whining when minorities call our society on their systemic oppression of a vulnerable minority. If they were really all about the trans ladies, they would be validating trans identities by casting trans people in mainstream movies in major roles, not shoepolishing cis guys into trans roles.

  11. Proof positive that transgender identities don’t even featurw in the radar of society and the general protection of minorities – Let’s paint the pictures using a metaphor : Major film casts white actor to portray black man. Result: Majority sanctioned outrage from black and white alike.

    Cis man portrays genderqueer/trans person. Result: Outrage from minority, but claiming of cisprivilage and statements of invalidation and silencing from cisgendered individuals. Sounds like race issues 50 years ago.

    • Lolol what? Your head’s in the sand, yo. Redface/yellowface and hell, blackface is still a thing. Just this year Johnny Depp played Tonto. In a movie that was heavily praised by the trans community (Cloud Atlas), there was yellowface. These are blatant and everywhere. This isn ‘t a post-racial societu. Please stop being so ignorant. Your privilege is showing.

      • “In a movie that was heavily praised by the trans community (Cloud Atlas)”

        Um, who exactly are you talking about who heavily praised Cloud Atlas? The trans community… we speak as one?? I read a lot of critique of it from people in the trans community specifically about the yellowface. Yes, there was initial excitement about the film before it opened because it had a trans director, but once seen there was a lot of criticism. The Lone Ranger was very widely criticized and boycotted by a broad spectrum of people because of the casting and presentation of Depp (not that I was interested in seeing it anyway). I do agree it’s completely wrong to make analogies between trans oppression and racial oppression and that Christel could have better made their point using another comparison. Racism is racism and ciscentrism is its own issue, they don’t need to be conflated.

        • Actually, Gina, in looking for AS’s coverage of Cloud Atlas, I discovered that you yourself praised the film, and neglected to mention the blatant yellowface, so there’s that.
          And no, the boycotting of Lone Ranger was not as “widespread” as you’re saying it is. There were still dolls of Tonto, still people on this very site defending it, etc etc etc etc. Most of the criticism came directly from Indian Country, specifically, Audrey K (who I love and who is often used as the voice of Indian Country, probably because she’s pretty, educated, and passes) I don’t really understand why you felt the need to correct me, though, and it does seem that in doing so you’re trying to compare Lone Ranger to Dallas Buyers’ Club which had nothing to do with my point and is reductive and doesn’t need to happen. Just like I as a cis person don’t have a real right to argue anything about Dallas Buyers’ Club, you as a white person have no right to speak to redface/blackface/yellowface/Lone Ranger/Cloud Atlas/et al
          I was making a point on the commenter’s seeming belief in a post-racial society, which even just typing out is hilarious to me.

  12. Woya/Sela, whatever your name is, I was commenting because you made a sweeping negative statement about the trans community being okay with yellowface… a comment which isn’t true (but you should discuss that theory further with trans people who are Asian… nice way to ignore their existence). You also made a sweeping generalization how the commenter was saying we live in a post-racial society and, while I disagree with their “50 years ago” statement, that doesn’t therefore equate with ‘post-racial.’ It’s one thing to question or critique something which someone did say versus calling someone ignorant for something they didn’t even explicitly say.

    As to my reaction to Cloud Atlas, I had mixed feelings about it when I first saw it (the evening before that thread appeared) and, yes, thought that aspect of it was meant with some ‘filmic irony’ (if there is such a thing) and not in the same way yellowface was used in, say ,Breakfast at Tiffanys. Upon reading that thread, listening to some of the other commenters and many other discussions of the film calling it out for that aspect, I came to the conclusion it doesn’t matter what the filmmakers intention was, if it was offensive to the slighted community, it’s offensive and it’s not my place to comment on it one way or another. Mea culpa, I was wrong. I had no idea my one statement therefore means the same as “heavy praise from the trans community.”

    As to the Lone Ranger, you brought it into the thread, not I.

  13. Jared i think, he didn’t get the real point of the character .He was acting good as trans women , but on the end. The point was not there ,was just acting trans with not going deep into it .The feelings and real picture i think was lost on the end of the movie , forgotten .Didn’t stay in mind and make you think about character as trans person with all that historic story .And also after the oscar Jared, said this is for my MOM… and why ? He didn’t said anything about Trans community ( that was hiss roll ) i think he didn’t put the character first ..He was always first ,and all about him , his mom ..The movie and the acting point was about the marginalize trans hiv+ women, and the message was not sent out there after the wining oscar ..It was all about him and the oscar . I think real Trans person could putt more up the character ,and make it real and to stay remember the character of the movie ..Sorry Jared i like you , but me not happy specially with your Oscar speech .

  14. I am constantly learning, all of the time, about trans men and women. As a trans man, I feel highly uneducated when I read articles like this, and the comments, and still do not understand why people are upset. Only trans actors can portray trans characters? Is this true with all identities? It’s discouraging to me, actually, to see this controversy that I do not understand.

    I was not sure if Rayon was trans or not. Was that ever confirmed? I thought Leto did a great job. A story was told. What I do like is that more and more (albeit slowly), expression of one’s gender is becoming not such a big scandal. Movies are a big reason why, in my opinion.

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