Entertainment Movies Eddie Redmayne Says He 'Wouldn't Take' Trans Role in 'The Danish Girl' Now: 'It Was a Mistake' "I made that film with the best intentions, but I think it was a mistake," Eddie Redmayne said of playing Lili Elbe, one of the first people to undergo gender confirmation surgery By Glenn Garner Glenn Garner Instagram Twitter Glenn Garner is a Writer/Reporter who works heavily with PEOPLE's Movies and TV verticals. Since graduating from Northern Arizona University with a dual major in journalism and photography, he got his professional start at OUT Magazine, The Advocate and Teen Vogue, and he's since consistently kept his finger on the pulse of the LGBTQ community. His first book The Guncle Guide was released in 2020 and was featured on Katie Couric's list of 100 recommended books of the year. People Editorial Guidelines Published on November 21, 2021 07:10 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Photo: Shutterstock; Dia Dipasupil/Getty Eddie Redmayne has heard the backlash to his performance in 2015's The Danish Girl. In an interview with The Sunday Times, the Academy Award winner, 39, said he "wouldn't take it on now" after he was criticized for the biopic, in which he plays Lili Elbe, one of the first people to undergo gender confirmation surgery. "I made that film with the best intentions, but I think it was a mistake," Redmayne said of the role that earned him an Oscar nomination. He previously said that he prepared for the part by meeting with transgender women of all ages. Alicia Vikander 'Understands the Criticism' Eddie Redmayne Faced for Playing a Trans Woman Alicia Vikander and Eddie Redmayne in The Danish Girl (2015). Moviestore/Shutterstock Although many argued that the movie wouldn't have been made without Redmayne's involvement — since he won his first Oscar for The Theory of Everything the year before — the casting fueled the ongoing debate over whether cisgender actors should play transgender roles. "The bigger discussion about the frustrations around casting is because many people don't have a chair at the table," he added. "There must be a levelling, otherwise we are going to carry on having these debates." Redmayne's costar Alicia Vikander, who won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her portrayal of Elbe's wife Gerda Wegener, recently commented on the controversy. RELATED VIDEO: How Mj Rodriguez, First Trans Woman to Receive Historic Emmy Nomination, Bonded with a Homeless Fan "I totally understand the criticism that has been out there, because we need to make change and we need to make sure that trans men and women actually get a foot in and get work," Vikander, 33, told Insider, adding that she thought Redmayne did a "a wonderful job" in his portrayal. Redmayne is currently in previews for the West End revival of Cabaret at London's Kit Kat Club. He plays the Emcee, a role often depicted as gender-diverse and frequently played by LGBTQ actors. "Of all the characters I've ever read, this one defies pigeonholing. I would ask people to come and see it before casting judgment," he told The Sunday Times.