On Friday, Oprah Winfrey will interview Elliot Page on Apple TV+. Speaking with Vanity Fair about the sit-down, the actor said that he saw the interview as “an opportunity to use a wide-reaching platform to speak from my heart about some of my experience and the resources I’ve been able to access—whether therapy or surgery—that have allowed me to be alive, to live my life.”
Page, who rose to fame after appearing in Juno and now stars in The Umbrella Academy on Netflix, came out as transgender last December to widespread support from the entertainment industry. He’s given interviews since, both written and on-camera, but speaking with Winfrey will offer a much larger platform. Part of the decision, he noted, was the anti-trans legislation and executive orders from five states—Alabama, Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi, and South Dakota—which limit trans youth’s ability to participate in sports and receive gender-affirming medical treatment.
“It was something I needed to sit with for a moment because the backlash right now is so intense,” Page said of the decision. “But the rhetoric coming from anti-trans activists and anti-LGBTQ activists—it’s devastating. These bills are going to be responsible for the death of children. It is that simple.”
“I don’t want it to sound like, ‘Look at me,’” Page added. “It’s not that at all. Actually, I was really nervous. But I thought about it for a bit, and it just felt like, OK, the GOP basically wants to destroy the lives of trans kids and stop the Equality Act. How do you not use this platform?”
Page said that he’s “100 percent” known since he was a toddler that he was a boy; he recalled writing fake love letters and signing them with the name “Jason.” He emphasized, however, that every trans person’s experience is different.
“Every little aspect of my life, that is who I was, who I am, and who I knew myself to be,” he said. “I just couldn’t understand when I’d be told, ‘No, you’re not. No, you can’t be that when you’re older.’ You feel it. Now I’m finally getting myself back to feeling like who I am, and it’s so beautiful and extraordinary, and there’s a grief to it in a way.”