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The Danish Girl director reveals why Eddie Redmayne was chosen instead of a trans actor

The Danish Girl director reveals why Eddie Redmayne was chosen instead of a trans actor

Eddie Redmayne plays Lili Elbe in The Danish Girl

Oscar-winning director Tom Hooper has revealed the reason why he wanted to cast Eddie Redmayne instead of a trans actor in his new film The Danish Girl.

The film tells the story of trans and intersex pioneer Lili Elbe, who traveled to Germany in the 1930s to have gender reassignment surgery. Virtually untested at the time, she died when her body rejected a uterus that had been transplanted with the goal of having children.

Based on David Ebershoff’s 2001 novel of the same name, Redmayne and Hooper are working together after their last joint effort Les Miserables.

Eddie was really the person I wanted to make the film with, and I was very passionate about that,’ Hooper told Screen Daily.

‘I think also there’s a certain gender fluidity that I sensed in him, that I found intriguing and it led me to think he might be a really interesting person to cast in this role.

‘I felt that there was something in him that was drawn to the feminine. That was something that I felt he might be interested to explore further.

‘I think there’s a tremendous pool of talented trans actors out there, and I think there’s probably a journey to go on to make sure that talented trans actors have the same access to opportunities both in front of and behind the character as cisgendered actors.

‘I hope we’re at the beginning of a revolution that will improve access for trans actors and trans filmmakers — but there’s a long way to go.’