Elliot Page is finally feeling like his true self.
The Canadian actor is on the new cover of Time magazine, and in an interview he opened up about coming out as transgender last year.
Asked how he’s been feeling since the announcement, Page said, “This feeling of true excitement and deep gratitude to have made it to this point in my life, mixed with a lot of fear and anxiety.”
The 34-year-old also talked about what he expected the reaction to be when he came out.
“What I was anticipating was a lot of support and love and a massive amount of hatred and transphobia,” he said. “That’s essentially what happened.”
Among the earliest moments Page knew he was a boy was at age nine, when his mom allowed him to cut his hair short.
“I felt like a boy. I wanted to be a boy. I would ask my mom if I could be someday,” he recalled. “I just never recognized myself. For a long time I could not even look at a photo of myself.”
In 2014, before coming out as trans, Page came out as gay.
“The difference in how I felt before coming out as gay to after was massive,” the actor remembered. “But did the discomfort in my body ever go away? No, no, no, no.”
During the pandemic, the downtime of being in quarantine allowed Page to reflect in ways that allowed him to fully accept who he is.
“I had a lot of time on my own to really focus on things that I think, in so many ways, unconsciously, I was avoiding,” he explained. “I was finally able to embrace being transgender and letting myself fully become who I am.”
Now that he is out, Page sees the importance of being a trans person in the spotlight.
“Extremely influential people are spreading these myths and damaging rhetoric — every day you’re seeing our existence debated. Transgender people are so very real,” he said.
“My privilege has allowed me to have resources to get through and to be where I am today, and of course I want to use that privilege and platform to help in the ways I can,” Page added.
GALLERY: Trans on TV
“We know who we are,” he said. “People cling to these firm ideas [about gender] because it makes people feel safe. But if we could just celebrate all the wonderful complexities of people, the world would be such a better place.”
Page also revealed that since coming out, he has had “top” surgery — the removal of his breast tissue — and that is has “transformed” his life.
As for his career, Page is looking forward to the new opportunities for different kinds of roles that might come in light of his transition.
“I’m really excited to act, now that I’m fully who I am, in this body,” he said. “No matter the challenges and difficult moments of this, nothing amounts to getting to feel how I feel now.”
As of late, Page has been heavily involved in environmental issues. His documentary There’s Something in the Water, released on Netflix in March of last year, highlights the stories of Indigenous and Black Nova Scotian communities that have been disproportionally affected by decisions to place hazardous waste sites near their homes.
Page would end up pouring approximately $350,000 of his own money into the project in order to get it off the ground and completed as soon as possible.
“What’s happened in these communities for decades and decades has caused extraordinary trauma and illness and loss and pain and the change needs to happen right now,” Page told Global News at the time.
Page is due to begin filming Season 3 of Netflix superhero series The Umbrella Academy in early 2021, and he’s slated to voice numerous characters across multiple upcoming movie projects.
Page and his wife, Emma Portner, recently filed for divorce after almost three years together.
— With files from Global News’ Chris Jancelewicz
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