Eddie Redmayne says he'd turn down Danish Girl role today: 'I think it was a mistake'
"I wouldn't take it on now," Redmayne said in a new interview with The Sunday Times. "I made that film with the best intentions, but I think it was a mistake."
Redmayne, a straight cisgender actor, won critical acclaim for his performance as Lili Elbe, a Danish painter and one of the first people to undergo gender reassignment surgery. But his casting also prompted criticism at the time and after the fact.
Although Redmayne acknowledges that his involvement likely helped The Danish Girl reach big screens, he pointed to that power disparity as one of the reasons to ensure such roles are played by trans actors in the future.
"The bigger discussion about the frustrations around casting is because many people don't have a chair at the table," he said. "There must be a leveling. Otherwise, we are going to carry on having these debates."
The actor reflected on the Elbe role as he steps into the shoes of the Emcee in the London revival of the Tony-winning 1966 musical Cabaret. In the past, LGBTQ actors such as Joel Grey and Alan Cumming have played the Emcee.
"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."