Glenn Close, who starred in the 2011 film “Albert Nobbs” as a woman living life as the male title character, weighed in on the recent controversy over Scarlett Johansson’s casting in a transgender role.
“My thinking right now is that people who are producing and directing properties like that need to go out of their way to get trans actors jobs,” Close said in a podcast with the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, “but they also should have the opportunity to cast the best person.”
Close added that “acting is a craft” and that she believes “anyone should be able to play anyone. But I do understand the frustration.”
Last month, Johansson withdrew from the film “Rub & Tug,” in which she’d been cast as a transgender man. Her casting had been criticized by many in the transgender community, and GLAAD later called her withdrawal from the role a “game changer” for Hollywood.
Close was Oscar-nominated for “Albert Nobbs.”
In the podcast, Close also discusses the firing of her Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn from the franchise after offensive tweets resurfaced. Many cast members signed an open letter of support for the director last month.
“I felt sad,” Close told the HFPA. “I felt sad certainly for James and I felt sad for the whole situation. I felt sad that we’re in a society where on social media people say things that they might not say in person. I think that’s a real danger. If you’re saying something on social media that you can’t say to somebody face to face then you should think about what you’re saying on social media.
“When I worked with him it was the first time I had been in a movie like that and he was a really good director and he had a great atmosphere on set.”
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