The J.K. Rowling controversy shows no signs of abating anytime soon. We’re now three months on from the Harry Potter creator whipping up a firestorm when she revealed her transphobic views and everyone is still mad as hell. Since then, we’ve seen vast swathes of the fan community disowning both her and the Wizarding World, planned boycotts of her projects and the cast of the movies condemning her position.
Now, Fantastic Beasts star Eddie Redmayne has once again commented on the situation. Back in June, he said:
“As someone who has worked with both J.K. Rowling and members of the trans community, I wanted to make it absolutely clear where I stand. I disagree with Jo’s comments. Trans women are women, trans men are men and non-binary identities are valid. I would never want to speak on behalf of the community but I do know that my dear transgender friends and colleagues are tired of this constant questioning of their identities, which all too often results in violence and abuse.”
It’s a powerful condemnation of Rowling’s views, which made it a little confusing when The Wrap published an article with the headline: “Eddie Redmayne Defends JK Rowling’s Transphobic Comments” (though it seems they’ve since changed it).
They’re referencing a recent interview the actor gave to promote upcoming Netflix Original The Trial Of The Chicago 7, an Aaron Sorkin movie about 1960s activism. During this, he was asked about the Rowling situation and restated his previous position, repeating that he “strongly disagrees” with her views and has a lot of “trans friends and colleagues” who are “having their human rights challenged around the world and facing discrimination on a daily basis.”
However, he did admit to being disturbed by the “vitriol” thrown at J.K. Rowling on social media, revealing that he’d written her a private note. But he ended by saying that this anger flows both ways, concluding:
“There continues to be a hideous torrent of abuse towards trans people online and out in the world that is devastating.”
So, basically, it’s just a case of a seriously misleading headline. Which, once again, seems to have been changed now.
The Trial of the Chicago 7 lands on Netflix on October 16th and is already being tipped for Oscar success.