11 Transgender Stars Weigh In on Trans Images in Entertainment (Exclusive)

In honor of Transgender Awareness Week, GLAAD and TheWrap partner to bring you these takes on representations in TV and Film

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Chaz Bono, Transgender advocate, writer and musician

1. What transgender story or character has been particularly meaningful or impactful to you?

"'Boys Don't Cry' was important to me. It was about a year after I saw that film that I started to question my own gender identity. It's a difficult movie to watch, but it was the first image of a transgender man I'd ever seen in the mainstream media. Even though the character wasn't perfect and there was a tragic ending, I could still identify with Brandon. Seeing that film helped me figure out that I was transgender."

2. What is a common stereotype or cliché in stories about transgender people that you never want to see again?

"I'm so tired of seeing TV shows and films where transgender people are either victimized or killers. And too often those characters that are supposed to be transgender don't look or act anything like actual transgender people. People in the entertainment industry who are writing, casting, directing, and acting transgender roles have a responsibility to do their research and make it more realistic."
  • Danielle Moneer Macdonell

    You missed the entire cast and company of “The Switch”? I'd love to see a wider presentation of trans women, we're not all femmes.

    • Crystal Waters

      Down with femmes!

  • Womandrogyne

    An interesting, but relentlessly gender-stereotypical and gender-binary collection of views and images – which I think perpetuates the invisibility of non-gender-stereotypical and non-binary trans* people in the media and our culture generally.

    • Crystal Waters

      Lets burn them at the stake for this outrage.

  • Istanbulite

    I am not sure how a woman the age of Jennifer Finney Boylan could have missed the life and books by Jan Morris. Her autobiography, Conundrum, was published ages ago and after her transition she continued being the cool travel author that she had always been. HP gay voices have never included her in any of their lists of important or famous transgenders.

  • Ariel Cinii

    You know the problem? No, of course you don't. The problem is that writers & producers still think the words “sex change” are funny. They titter up their sleeves (ooh, I just said “tit”) and they dredge up stereotypes from the days of “Some Like It Hot”. Writers need to stash this last prejudice against the Other they don't understand and find more people like Ellen DeGeneres who are real &endearing souls, not just walking joke factories. “Sean Saves the World” is actually just a continuation of the Jack we knew from “Will & Grace”. Find a transgendered actor, give himer a breakout role and let the actor and the part Evolve.

  • postingacomment

    They act like they're really the opposite sex when they're not, so I guess they can act in anything.