Halle Berry has withdrawn from consideration for a film where she would have been portraying a transgender man. The actress announced that she was preparing for the role during an interview on Instagram Live with celebrity hairstylist Christin Brown.
Brown asked if Berry would ever consider returning to her iconic short haircut and she replied that she had been thinking about cutting her hair for a role.
“[It’s] a character where the woman is a trans character,” said Berry. “She’s a woman that transitioned into a man. She’s a character in a project I love that I might be doing,” Berry said. “Who this woman was is so interesting to me, and that will probably be my next project,” she said, mistakenly misgendering the character.
She also expressed a desire to do a “deep dive” into “that world.” The backlash from the LGTBQIA+ community was swift. Many voices on social media pleaded with Berry not to take the role. Shortly afterward, Berry responded to the backlash by issuing a public apology across her social media channels.
“Over the weekend I had the opportunity to discuss my consideration of an upcoming role as a transgender man, and I’d like to apologize for those remarks. As a cisgender woman, I now understand that I should not have considered this role, and that the transgender community should undeniably have the opportunity to tell their own stories,” she wrote in a statement.
“I am grateful for the guidance and critical conversation over the past few days and will continue to listen, educate and learn from this mistake,” she continued.
She then committed to helping the trans community. “I vow to be an ally in using my voice to promote better representation on-screen, both in front of and behind the camera,” she wrote.
GLADD responded to her apology on Twitter. “We are pleased that @halleberry listened to the concerns of transgender people and learned from them. Other powerful people should do the same,” wrote the LGTBQIA+ advocacy organization.