Halle Berry apologizes for considering transgender character as next role, vows to be ally

Charles Trepany, USA TODAY
·2 min read

Halle Berry is issuing an apology after revealing in a recent interview she considered playing a transgender man.

The actress took to Twitter on Monday to apologize for her 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.

Berry added: "I am grateful for the guidance and critical conversation over the past few days and I will continue to listen, educate and learn from this mistake. I vow to be an ally in using my voice to promote better representation on-screen, both in front of and behind the camera."

USA TODAY has reached out to Berry's rep for further comment.

The controversy stemmed from an Instagram interview published Friday with hair stylist Christin Brown.

When Brown asked Berry if she would ever cut her hair short again, the actress said that she would. Berry then brought up that she was considering a role as a transgender man, which would require her to cut her hair short.

"I'm thinking of a character where this woman is transgender," Berry said. "She's a woman that transitioned into a man."

Berry said she received a pitch for the project around the time she was making the upcoming 2020 film "Bruised," which she directs and stars in.

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"I want to experience that world," Berry said of the transgender role. "This world, who this woman was, is so interesting to me. And that will probably be my next acting role."

Berry garnered backlash for her comments on Twitter, with many saying that transgender roles should be played by transgender actors.

"Still trying to understand why Halle Berry would be interested in playing the role of a transgender man," wrote @tempest071990. "Sigh!"

"The language here demonstrates @halleberry doesn’t even know what a trans man IS," wrote @prestonmaxallen. "This is why cis people can’t take trans roles - too many confuse our actual identities with their Oscar bait. I look forward to her apology and dropping of this part."

Others said they appreciated Berry owning up to the mistake.

"Thank you for listening and learning and providing opportunities for trans folks to have this role," tweeted activist April Reign.

"Halle Berry did the right thing," wrote comedian Billy Eichner. "Acting isn’t merely about artistry, it’s about EMPLOYMENT."

The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation also commended Berry's apology. "We are pleased that @halleberry listened to the concerns of transgender people and learned from them," GLAAD tweeted. "Other powerful people should do the same."

The organization also encouraged people watch the Netflix documentary "Disclosure" to learn more about transgender representation in media.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Halle Berry apologizes for considering role playing a transgender man