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01st May 2024

Daniel Radcliffe breaks silence on JK Rowling trans debate

Charlie Herbert

The Harry Potter star reasserted his support for the ‘rights of LGBTQ people’

Daniel Radcliffe has said J.K. Rowling’s comments about the transgender community make him “really sad.”

The actor achieved worldwide stardom for his role as Harry Potter in the film franchise based on Rowling’s hugely successful books.

But in recent years, she has attracted controversy for her views on transgender issues, with the author repeatedly saying that she does not believe transgender women are women.

At the same time, Radcliffe and his fellow Potter stars Rupert Grint and Emma Watson have voiced their support for the trans community.

Daniel Radcliffe breaks silence on JK Rowling trans debate.

In a new interview with the Atlantic, Radcliffe said that he hadn’t spoken to Rowling in years, and that her trans views make him “really sad.”

He told the publication: “It makes me really sad, ultimately. I do look at the person that I met, the times that we met, and the books that she wrote, and the world that she created, and all of that is to me so deeply empathic.”

The 34-year-old went on to say that whilst “nothing in my life would have probably happened the way it is” without Rowling and her books, that “doesn’t mean that you owe the things you truly believe to someone else for your entire life.”

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The difference in views between the actors and Rowling was highlighted last month when the 58-year-old said the likes of Radcliffe and Watson can “save their apologies.” This was after the publication of the Cass Report, a major report into trans youth care in England.

In response to Rowling’s recent comments, Radcliffe said: “I will continue to support the rights of all LGBTQ people, and have no further comment than that.”

Rowling made headlines in 2020 when she called out an article’s use of the phrase “people who menstruate”, and made clear that she believes trans women are not women.

Shortly after this, Radcliffe wrote an essay for The Trevor Project in which he apologised “for the pain” the Harry Potter creator’s comments caused to fans of the franchise.

He wrote that “transgender women are women” and argued that any “statement to the contrary erases the identity and dignity of transgender people and goes against all advice given by professional health care associations who have far more expertise on this subject matter than either Jo or I.”

Watson and Grint, who played Hermione and Ron in the Harry Potter, have both also openly voiced their support for the trans community.

Watson tweeted in 2020: “I want my trans followers to know that I and so many other people around the world see you, respect you and love you for who you are.”

Meanwhile, Grint said: “I firmly stand with the trans community and echo the sentiments expressed by many of my peers. Trans women are women. Trans men are men.”

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