I don’t know what your weekend was like, but in my corner of the universe, there was only two things anyone wanted to talk about: the godawful weather and Ellen Page’s touching coming out at a Human Rights Campaign event on Valentine’s Day.
A noticeably nervous and emotional Page gave a heartfelt nine-minute speech, thanking the activists in the room for their courage and support and declaring, “I’m tired of hiding, and I’m tired of lying by omission.” Her time on the stage was equally devoted to acknowledging the bullying and violence queer youth face today and to speaking of her own experience as an actress subject to bullshit gender-policing.
In perhaps the most incisive part of her speech, she said,
I try not to read gossip as a rule. But the other day, a website ran an article with a picture of me wearing sweatpants on the way to the gym. And the writer asked, “Why does this petite beauty insist on dressing like a massive man?” Because I like to be comfortable. There are pervasive stereotypes about masculinity and femininity that define how we’re all supposed to act, dress, and speak, and they serve no one. Anyone who defies these so-called “norms” becomes worthy of comment and scrutiny, and the LGBT community knows this all too well. Yet there is courage all around us. The football hero Michael Sam; the actress Laverne Cox; the musicians Tegan and Sara Quinn; the family that supports their daughter or son who has come out.
In other Page news, the Inception co-star will play Julianne Moore’s domestic partner in the upcoming Freeheld. The gay rights indie centers on the real-life case of Stacie Andree (Page) and Laurel Hester (Moore), the latter of whom is a terminally ill police detective who fights the New Jersey government to transfer to pension benefits to her life partner. The feature is based on Cynthia Wade’s Academy Award winning documentary short of the same name.
Watch Page’s coming-out speech below: