By David T. Valentin
There’s a speckle of hope for some much-needed Trans representation over the horizon for Pixar Animation Studios and hints of perhaps the very first openly Trans character in a Pixar animated project.
According to Trans March’s Twitter account, Pixar sent out a detailed casting search for someone who can portray “a 14-year-old-transgender girl.” The casting call calls for an actress who is 12 – 17 years old who is “enthusiastic, outgoing, funny, and energetic; feels comfortable acting in front of a microphone; can authentically portray a 14-year-old transgender girl.”
The news comes at a much-needed time for Trans individuals who seem to be under attack by a wave of anti-trans legislation. And although President Biden of the United States has undone much of the harm president committed against Trans citizens (the military ban, revoking Trans specific healthcare, and denying protective anti-discrimination laws, etc.), the hateful rhetoric against Trans citizens unfortunately continues on.
Although Pixar’s casting call is a glimmer of hope to perhaps see a Trans main character flourish on the big screen, without being muddled down for censorship and losing out on money overseas, the casting call did not specifically call for a young Trans actress to play their newest character.
It is true that, yes, acting is acting, but when so many Trans actresses are skipped over to portray their lived experiences on the big screen with the ability to portray it genuinely, it cheapens the importance of having a Trans character because it feels as though cis actors are speaking over actual Trans people.
With any luck, Pixar will do the right thing and will cast a 14-year-old Trans actress so they can correctly, genuinely, and honestly tell their stories and show the world what it really means to be a Trans person.