Calm down, everybody; Richard Simmons is still a man.
A spokesman for the fitness guru has shot down a National Enquirer report that Simmons has transitioned into a woman, calling the report a “complete fabrication.”
“It’s a complete fabrication and not true,” Simmons’ publicist, Tom Estey, told TheWrap on Wednesday.
The National Enquirer report, released Wednesday, claims that Simmons underwent “two years of secret surgeries,” receiving breast implants and hormones. The Enquirer claims that Simmons is “sparing no expense to make the transformation complete!”
The tabloid quotes a source as saying, “[This is] not just Richard Simmons in drag. This is Richard dressed as a softly spoken woman named Fiona!”
The 67-year-old exercise instructor, who was reportedly hospitalized for dehydration earlier this month, has been plagued by rumors recently. Earlier this year, reports surfaced that Simmons was being held hostage in his own home, prompting Simmons to set the record straight on NBC’s “Today.”
“I do what I want to do as I’ve always done,” Simmons said. “So people should sort of just believe what I have to say because, like, I’m Richard Simmons!”
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
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."
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