Hilary Swank has reflected on her ‘life-changing’ experience playing trans man Brandon Teena in Boys Don’t Cry, while adding she was ‘deeply discouraged’ by people’s reactions to her living as a man beforehand in preparation for the role.
Boys Don’t Cry, which also stars Chloë Sevigny, tells the story of Brandon, who was raped and a week later murdered in Humboldt, Nebraska on New Year’s Eve 1993 at the age of 21.
Hilary won the 2000 best actress Oscar for her role in the film.
‘I was able to learn about a person who was born in the same hospital I was born in [in Lincoln, Nebraska] two years before .’
On how she prepared for the role, Hilary said: ‘I went out and was living in the world as best as I could trying to pass as a boy. I was 24 years old.
‘What I saw and experienced was life-changing, because I scratched the surface of what it feels like to not be able to be defined by stereotypical, systemic ideas of how gender should be.
‘At times it was greatly disappointing and I was really upset with the human race. I was deeply discouraged by people and their reactions to me, the same exact person that had been walking around, and when I was able to be defined, was treated a very different way.’
The film ended up being a success with critics and audiences for its treatment of the tragic story, with many lauding it as the best film of the year.
Hilary’s other film roles include Logan Lucky and The Hunt.
She won her second best actress Oscar for Million Dollar Baby in 2005.
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Credit: Original article published here.