Transgender actor Elliot Page knew he 'wanted to be a boy' at age NINE

Transgender actor Elliot Page knew he ‘wanted to be a boy’ at age NINE: Juno star says he had to ‘compromise’ his true gender identity to become a child actor and reveals he’s undergone top surgery as he appears on TIME cover

  • The 34-year-old Juno star came out as transgender in December, when he shared an emotional statement on social media while revealing his name change 
  • Elliot, who was born in Nova Scotia and began acting at age 10, has now revealed that he first realized he ‘wanted to be a boy’ when he was nine years old 
  • He cut his hair short and began embracing a male identity – however months later he landed his first acting role and had to make ‘a difficult compromise’
  • The Umbrella Academy star is currently filming the third season of the Netflix show, in which he stars as queer female character Vanya Hargreeves
  • In his first interview since coming out as trans, Elliot told TIME that isolating during the pandemic gave him time to focus on his gender identity  
  • Elliot uses he/him and they/them pronouns, and identifies as non-binary, however TIME referred to him as a transgender man, and he called himself a ‘guy’
  • ‘It’s a complicated journey and an ongoing process,’ he said of the labels   
  • Elliot also discussed his relationship with ex-wife Emma Portner; they split in summer 2020, and divorced early this year but ‘remain close friends’

Transgender actor Elliot Page has revealed that he knew he ‘wanted to be a boy’ when he was just nine years old – but says he had to ‘compromise’ his true gender identity in order to pursue a career as a child actor. 

The 34-year-old is now speaking out about his decades-long struggle with his gender in a new interview with TIME – his first since he made the decision to publicly come out as transgender and non-binary in December – admitting that he felt that he had to hide his gender in order to achieve success in Hollywood. 

Elliot, who also shared that he has undergone top surgery, says he first ‘felt like a boy’ when he was nine years old and was allowed to cut his hair short for the first time, recalling: ‘I felt like a boy. I wanted to be a boy. I would ask my mom if I could be someday.’ 

But just months after he was allowed to cut his hair short for the first time, Elliot landed his first professional acting job in Canadian TV movie Pit Pony, which required him to look and act like a stereotypical little girl, forcing him to grow his hair out again. 

‘I became a professional actor at the age of 10 and pursuing that passion came with a difficult compromise,’ he shared. ‘Of course I had to look a certain way.’ 

Speaking out: Transgender star Elliot Page has revealed he knew he ‘wanted to be a boy’ when he was just nine years old but had to ‘compromise’ his true gender to become a child actor

Stardom: The 34-year-old, who publicly came out as transgender in December, shot to global fame while starring in hit 2007 movie Juno, but says at the time he ‘never recognized himself’

Elliot came out publicly as gay in 2014 in an emotional speech at the Human Rights Campaign’s Time to Thrive conference for LGTBQ youth.

In the speech, the actor shared that they hoped the news would help others struggling with their sexuality, saying: ‘I’m here today because I am gay. And because maybe I can make a difference.’

Three years later, in November 2017, Elliot accused X-Men director Brett Ratner of outing them as gay on set, when the actor was just 18.

The Juno actor made the allegations in a lengthy Facebook post, in which they also revealed that they had been fondled by a director and sexually assaulted by a crew member when they were 16.

According to Elliot, Ratner outed them during a cast and crew meet-and-greet for X-Men: The Last Stand, where he urged a woman to have sex with the actor.

‘He looked at a woman standing next to me, ten years my senior, pointed to me and said: “You should f*** her to make her realize she’s gay,”‘ Elliot claimed.

‘I was a young adult who had not yet come out to myself. I knew I was gay, but did not know, so to speak. I felt violated when this happened.’

They continued: ‘He “outed” me with no regard for my well-being, an act we all recognize as homophobic.

‘…This public, aggressive outing left me with long standing feelings of shame, one of the most destructive results of homophobia.’

Although Elliot shot to global fame when they starred as the titular character in hit indie flick Juno in 2007, they have since gone on to achieve huge success on the big and small screens, most recently as one of the main stars of Netflix series Umbrella Academy.

The actor is currently filming the third series of the show in Canada, after producers confirmed that they would continue playing the role of female violinist Vanya Hargreaves.

In the second season of the show, Vanya fell in love with a woman, and Elliot praised the decision to explore the character’s queerness in an interview with Pride, saying: ‘…Getting to play her falling in love for the first time and the beauty of that and the joy of that and then hoping to be mindful and sensitive in terms of how to represent the other aspects and mostly, I’m just happy that a storyline like this is in a show that has the reach that it does.’

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