Just days after announcing she was considering a role as a transgender man in an upcoming film, Halle Berry has apologized and said she wants to “learn from this mistake.”
The Oscar-winning actress faced backlash on social media following a conversation on Friday about the role during an Instagram Live chat with hairstylist Christin Brown.
“[It’s] a character where the woman is a trans character, so she’s a woman that transitioned into a man,” Berry told Brown in the now-expired video as reported by People magazine. “She’s a character in a project that I love that I might be doing.”
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After media outlets began to report on Berry’s interest in the film, she faced anger online for considering the part and for describing the character as a woman instead of a man.
On Monday, Berry issued an apology on Twitter and said she was stepping away from the role.
“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,” Berry began. “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.”
“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. 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 added.
— Halle Berry (@halleberry) July 7, 2020
LGBTQ advocacy group GLAAD issued a statement on Twitter praising Berry for walking away from the role.
“We are pleased that Halle Berry listened to the concerns of transgender people and learned from them. Other powerful people should do the same,” the statement said.
Berry’s comments came amid conversations in Hollywood about accurate representation in the media.
Mike Henry, a white actor and producer who plays Cleveland Brown on the animated series Family Guy, recently announced that he would no longer voice the Black character.
The producers of The Simpsons have also said white actors would no longer voice Black and non-white characters on the show.