Eddie Redmayne said that taking the role of transgender painter Lili Elbe was a “mistake” in a brand new interview.
Back in 2015, Redmayne starred in the critically-acclaimed film The Danish Girl as the historical figure.
The movie followed the life of Elbe and her journey as one of the first trans individuals to receive gender reassignment surgery.
Redmayne’s portrayal of the historical figure earned him numerous nominations including one for Best Actor at the Academy Awards.
But many LGBTQ+ activists and members of the transgender community criticised the casting of a cisgender man in the role.
In a new interview with The Sunday Times, Redmayne answered whether he would take the role if it was offered to him today.
“No, I wouldn’t take it on now. I made that film with the best intentions, but I think it was a mistake,” he said.
The 39-year-old went on to say that there needs to be “levelling” when it comes to casting for LGBTQ+ roles.
“The bigger discussion about the frustrations around casting is because many people don’t have a chair at the table,” he explained. “There must be a levelling, otherwise we are going to carry on having these debates.”
Oscar winner Alicia Vikander, who co-starred in the film with Redmayne, echoed similar sentiments earlier this year during an interview with Insider.
“I totally understand the criticism that has been out there, because we need to make change and we need to make sure that trans men and women actually get a foot in and get work,” she told the publication.
“My only concern is that we may need to get to a point in the end where we have trans women and men playing cis characters. Because that is the main thing.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Redmayne discussed his upcoming role as the Emcee in the West End production of Cabaret.
Over the years, the flamboyant role has largely been played by LGBTQ+ actors like Joel Grey and Alan Cumming.
When asked about stepping into the role, Redmayne encouraged fans to see the show before casting “judgement”.
“Of all the characters I’ve ever read, this one defies pigeonholing,” he said. “I would ask people to come and see it before casting judgment.”
Read the full interview here.