Eddie Redmayne Says It Was ‘Mistake’ to Play Trans ‘Danish Girl’ Character

In a recent interview, the actor said he wouldn't take the part now. While he made the film "with the best intentions," he added, it was ultimately a "mistake."

Actor Eddie Redmayne poses for the camera.

Image via Getty/David M. Benett/Dave Benett/ATG

Actor Eddie Redmayne poses for the camera.

Eddie Redmayne now says it was “a mistake” to take on the role of Lili Elbe in the 2015 drama The Danish Girl.

In a recent interview with the Sunday Times, the actor—who was nominated for an Oscar for the performance—was asked about the role. Surrounding the initial 2015 release and ensuing awards-centered conversations, the film faced criticism for a number of reasons, including historical inaccuracies and the fact that Redmayne was cast to play a transgender woman.

“I wouldn’t take it on now,” Redmayne said in the new interview. “I made that film with the best intentions, but I think it was a mistake.” The actor, most recently seen in last year’s The Trial of the Chicago 7, also connected this assessment of the casting to a larger need for “a leveling” in the industry with regards to informed casting.

“The bigger discussion about the frustrations around casting is because many people don’t have a chair at the table,” he said. “There must be a leveling, otherwise we are going to carry on having these debates.”

Redmayne has expressed similar regrets over the role in the past, including in a 2018 GQ interview, as seen below. “There was a certain amount of backlash which I felt from that which I understood and sort of agreed with. … It’s a complicated experience,” he said at the time.

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The Danish Girl was directed by Tom Hooper and also starred Alicia Vikander, the latter of whom won Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal of Gerda Wegener.

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