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12th Apr 2024

Elliot Page says he regrets his character making homophobic joke in Juno

Nina McLaughlin

“It wasn’t something I totally registered at the time, but, of course, now that I’m older I do.”

Elliot Page has spoken out and said that he regrets making a homophobic joke while in Juno.

The actor, who came out as transgender back in 2020, previously reflected on the legacy of one his most iconic roles.

Juno was released in 2007 and stars Page as the titular character Juno.

Directed by Jason Reitman and written by Diablo Cody, the movie follows Juno as she deals with an unexpected pregnancy and finds a failed rockstar, Mark (Jason Bateman), and his wife (Jennifer Garner) who plan to adopt the unborn child.

The film was a huge hit and received critical acclaim. Along with winning the Oscar for best original screenplay, it was nominated for best picture and Page received a nomination for best actress.

However, in a 2017 interview with Bustle, he spoke out against one of the jokes his character said in the film.

When discussing names for Juno’s unborn baby, Batemen’s character said ‘likes Madison’.

Juno responds: “Madison? Wait, hold on…Isn’t that like a little, gay?”

The actor spoke candidly to the outlet about how this line is problematic.

“It wasn’t something I totally registered at the time, but, of course, now that I’m older I do,” Page said.

“So many movies I loved as a kid are just rampant with homophobia and transphobia and biphobia, and I’m not excusing it by any means.”

He continued to talk more widely about representation in the film industry.

“It really hurts the industry and it really hurts film,” he said. “We need more stories. We need more representation. We need more points of view.” 

Page has spoken out about what went on behind the scenes of Juno

It comes after Page admitted he had sex “all the time” with one of his Juno co-stars whilst they were filming.

In his recent memoir, Pageboy, the actor recalled his relationship with Thirlby during their time together on set.

He said they had “palpable” chemistry, and after one encounter in her hotel room they started “having sex all the time.”

Page wrote: “I was taken aback the moment I saw Olivia Thirlby. We stood in her hotel room. Billie Holliday played. She was about to start making lunch, when she looked directly at me and said point-blank, ‘I’m really attracted to you.’

“‘Uh, I’m really attracted to you, too.’ At that we started sucking face. It was on… we started having sex all the time: her hotel room, in our trailers at work, once in a tiny, private room in a restaurant. What were we thinking?

“We thought we were subtle. Being intimate with Olivia helped my shame dissipate. I didn’t see a glint of it in her eyes and I wanted that – done feeling wretched about who I am.

“Ironically, playing a pregnant teenager was one of the first times I felt a modicum of autonomy on set. I was wearing a fake belly but not being hyperfeminised. For me, Juno was emblematic of what could be possible, a space beyond the binary.”

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