List of transgender characters in film

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This is a list of films with transgender people and transgender fictional characters. This does not include documentaries, which are listed on the lists of LGBT-related films by decade or animated characters, which are noted on the List of fictional trans characters page.

The names are organized in alphabetical order by the surname (i.e. last name), or by a single name if the character does not have a surname.

Film and video[edit]

Various live-action films feature either transgender issues as a plot element or have trans men, trans women or non-binary trans characters. This is distinguished from animated films with LGBTQ characters, which are not included on this list.

Trans men[edit]

Characters Actor Show Year Notes
Aggie Lauren Mollica Itty Bitty Titty Committee 2007 A comedy about young feminists who spread their message through public art and vandalism. Aggie is a trans man[1][2] and he bonds with the main character, Anna, who recently broke up with her girlfriend and falls in love with Sadie,[3] later developing an apparent crush on her.
Benjamin Noémie Merlant A Good Man 2020 A drama about a French couple's wish to have a child that leads Benjamin, a trans man, to become pregnant because of his partner's unability to conceive.[4]
Lukas Rick Okon Romeos 2011 A drama and tragicomedy which revolves around the romantic relationship between Lukas, a 20-year-old gay trans man who is transitioning from female to male, and a cisgender gay man named Fabio.[5]
Mole McHenry Susan Lowe Desperate Living 1977 A John Waters comedy featuring a trans man character who gets phalloplasty.[6]
Mikäel Zoé Héran Tomboy 2011 A French drama about a 10-year-old AFAB child who, after moving with their family to a new neighborhood, introduces themself to their new friends as Mikäel. The film has been described as being about a girl who pretends to be a boy[7][8] or, alternatively, about a transgender boy.[9][10]
Albert Nobbs Glenn Close Albert Nobbs 2011 A drama about a trans man living in 19th century Dublin and working as a butler.[11] He bonds with another trans man, who is a painter, in the same city.
Shy Silas Howard By Hook or by Crook 2001 A queer buddy film written, directed by, and starring trans men.[12]
Brandon Teena Hilary Swank Boys Don't Cry 1999 A drama film based on the real-life story of Brandon Teena, a transgender man who was raped and murdered by male friends.[13][14][15][16] The movie received much media attention when its star Hilary Swank, who played Brandon, won the Academy Award for Best Actress.
Pierrot Susanne Sachsse Pierrot Lunaire 2014 An adaptation of Arnold Schoenberg's Pierrot Lunaire that features a trans man in the title role.[17]
Ray Elle Fanning 3 Generations 2015 A drama about a teenage trans boy who struggles with his mother and grandmother to get approved for hormone replacement therapy.[18][19][20]
Yuji Issei Ishida Strange Circus 2005 Yuji, the novelist's assistant,[21] is a transgender man.

Trans women[edit]

Characters Actor Work Year Notes
Alice Júnior Anna Celestino Mota Alice Júnior 2019 Brazilian film about a transgender girl who moves to the countryside.[22]
Jame Gumb / Buffalo Bill Ted Levine The Silence of the Lambs 1991 Director Jonathan Demme said about the character: "He didn't wish to be another gender...He didn't really have a sexual preference. He loathed himself — he wanted to transform himself so that there was no sense of him in the 'new' him [and] becoming a woman...that was his method of doing it...He wished he was a woman not because he always wanted to be a woman. This was another way to escape."[23] This means that Bill is a Bisexual trans woman.[24]
Angela Baker Felissa Rose Sleepaway Camp 1983, 1988, 1989, 2008 Angela Baker (portrayed by Felissa Rose in the first and fourth installments and Pamela Springsteen in the second and third), the killer and main character of the series, is a trans woman.[13][25]
Pamela Springsteen
Ruth Applewood Tom Wilkinson Normal 2003 A drama film about a midwestern factory worker and closeted trans woman, who stuns her wife of 25 years, revealing that she wishes to have sex reassignment surgery, and changing her name to Ruth.[26]
Barton Brian Deacon The Triple Echo 1972 A British soldier deserts his unit during WWII. At the suggestion of a woman named Alice, he meets while exploring the countryside nearby, he disguises himself as her sister to escape detection.[27] Enjoying the experience a little too much, he agrees to accept the invitation of a soldier to attend a dance at the base, risking exposure. Based on a novella by H.E. Bates.
Charles Beaumont Micheline Carvel Adam est... Ève [fr] 1954 Likely the first French trans film, by director René Gaveau. A boxer is "knocked out", then wakes up realizing she is a woman.[28]
Bernadette Bassenger Terence Stamp The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert 1994 Cult Australian film starring Hugo Weaving and Guy Pearce as drag queens and Terence Stamp as a trans woman.[29]
Bex Hari Nef Assassination Nation 2018 The character Bex is a transgender woman who discusses whether or not LGBTQ people should be sympathetic to those "who enact policies to erase them."[30]
Biba Alina Khan Joyland 2022 Biba is a Pakistani transgender woman for which the youngest son of the family depicted in the film falls.[31]
Rachel Bighead Joe Murray Rocko's Modern Life: Static Cling 2019 In the original Rocko's Modern Life, Ralph Bighead was the son of Rocko's neighbors. Static Cling, taking place 20 years after the original series, shows that Ralph transitioned to Rachel at some point. The series' creator, Joe Murray, felt that as the new work was about accepting change, including a trans female character would fit naturally into the episode.[32]
Bobbi Michael Caine Dressed to Kill 1980 A film about a transgender murderer.[25][24] During the film's initial release, the activist group Women Against Violence in Pornography and Media distributed a leaflet denouncing the film's misogynistic and transphobic attitudes, arguing that "The distorted image of a psychotic male transvestite [sic] makes all sexual minorities appear sick and dangerous."[33]
Patricia "Kitten" Braden Cillian Murphy Breakfast on Pluto 2005 This film stars Cillian Murphy as a young preoperative trans woman during the Irish Times of Trouble.[34] An orphan, she searches for her mother.
Sabrina "Bree" Felicity Huffman Transamerica 2005 A comedy drama starring Felicity Huffman, who plays Bree, a trans woman.[35] It was nominated for two Academy Awards in 2006: Felicity Huffman for Best Actress, and Dolly Parton for Best Original Song.
Myra Breckinridge Raquel Welch Myra Breckinridge 1970 Starring Raquel Welch in an off-beat role as a trans woman.[36][37][38]
Bubs Kim Hyang Gi

Yoo Hae-jin

Space Sweepers 2021 A group of space junk collectors discover a humanoid robot named Bubs.[39][40][41] Some called Bubs a "trans allegory" rather than representation.[42]
Calpernia Lee Pace Soldier's Girl 2003 A drama film based on the real-life story of the relationship between Private Barry Winchell and singer Calpernia Addams, starring Lee Pace as Calpernia.[43]
The Lady Chablis As herself Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil 1997 American crime drama film featuring The Lady Chablis who became a transgender icon and one of the first transgender performers to be received by a wider audience.[44][45][15][46]
Charlie Harry Gilby Just Charlie 2017 A film about a young trans girl who loves to play football.[47]
Parinya Charoenphol Asanee Suwan Beautiful Boxer 2003 A Thai film based on the real-life story of Parinya Charoenphol, a Muaythai boxer who is a trans woman who underwent transitional surgery.[48]
Chris Maya Henry For Nonna Anna 2017 This film stars Maya Henry as Chris, a young trans woman taking care of her ailing grandmother.[49]
Bubbles Cliquot Krystal Summers Ticked-Off Trannies with Knives 2010 A rape/revenge "transploitation" film about a trio of trans women who avenge themselves on three men who brutally attack them and kill two of their friends. GLAAD stated that the film "misrepresent[s] the lives of transgender women and use[s] grotesque, exploitative depictions of violence against transgender women in ways that make light of the horrific brutality they all too often face", adding that the film conflated transgenderism with drag, which would create the impression in viewers unfamiliar with trans issues that "transgender women are ridiculous caricatures of 'real women'".[50] while lead actress Krystal Summers said that the film "does not promote hate or violence against transgender women...[and is] a work of fiction and a revenge fantasy."[51]
Dil Jaye Davidson The Crying Game 1992 In this drama film, the plot revolves around a trans woman named Dil, a girlfriend of one of the protagonists.[52][53]
Bon Bon Johnny Depp Before Night Falls 2000 Bon Bon is a flamboyant trans woman who walks through the Cuban prisons, helping to smuggle a manuscript out of the prison.[54]
Dongfang Bubai / Invincible Asia Brigitte Lin The East Is Red 1993 Bubai is the primary antagonist. ("Invincible Asia" is the name given in the subtitles.)[55]
Eddie Peter Funeral Parade of Roses 1969 Follows a group of transgender drag queens,[56] Eddie and a few others, in the Japanese underground.[57] The film has been described as "a documentary being made about Tokyo's gay culture"[58] despite the fact it is a black-and-white drama film[59][60] which is said to have influenced the 1971 film A Clockwork Orange.[61]
Lt. Lois Einhorn Sean Young Ace Ventura: Pet Detective 1994 One of the main characters is revealed to be a trans woman.[62] The film has been heavily criticized for its portrayal of trans women, especially its stereotyping of the trans character as villainous and physically repulsive.[63]
Lili Elbe Eddie Redmayne The Danish Girl 2015 A drama film about Lili Elbe, based on the book of the same name, starring Eddie Redmayne and Alicia Vikander.[64]
Lola Toni Cantó All About My Mother 1999 A film by Pedro Almodóvar that tells the story of Manuela, a nurse whose son is hit by a car and killed. Lola, the son's father, is transgender. Agrado, a friend of Manuela, is also transgender, and a sex worker.[65]
Agrado Antonia San Juan
Kim Foyle Steven Mackintosh Different for Girls 1996 A British comedy film about two childhood friends who are reunited after one of them has undergone sex reassignment surgery.[66]
Glenda Ed Wood Glen or Glenda 1953 A loose, unauthorized retelling of Christine Jorgenson's story by director Ed Wood, filmed when it was illegal for a man to crossdress as a woman in public.[67] Glenda and Anne are trans women.[15]
Christine Jorgensen John Hansen The Christine Jorgensen Story 1970 Former Army private from the Bronx undergoes surgery and hormone treatments in Denmark in 1952 to transition from male to female, based on Jorgenson's autobiography.[68][25] Reviews were mixed[69][70][71] and Jorgensen later unsuccessfully tried to get a restraining order to stop Small's estate from exploiting the film, claiming Small diverted $100,000 owed to her for his own use.[72]
Joan Lambert Veronica Cartwright Alien 1979 Veronica Cartwright portrays a woman named Joan Lambert. In the sequel Aliens (1986) a biography very briefly flashes up on a computer screen in the background. The biography establishes Lambert as having had her gender altered from male to female. On the extras of a DVD presentation, one could see Lambert's full bio, which reads: "Despin Convert at birth (male to female). So far no indication of suppressed traumas related to gender alteration".[73]
Judy Peter Outerbridge Better Than Chocolate 1999 Features a sub-plot involving the transgender character named Judy, who struggles with family rejection throughout the film and who has a crush on, and ultimately begins a romantic relationship with, lesbian separatist Frances, who owns the gay and lesbian bookstore in which the film's central character Maggie works.[74][15] Judy also becomes friends with Maggie's somewhat sexually repressed mother, Lila.
Kimmy Yasmin Lee The Hangover Part II 2011 Features a beautiful trans woman who is a sex worker who Stu falls for. She is referred to as a ladyboy by one of the main characters.[75][76][77]
Loretta Eric Idle Life of Brian 1979 Loretta tells her comrades Reg, Judith, and Francis that she wants to be a woman, wants to have babies, and that it is "every man's right to have babies if he wants them." Although Reg is skeptical, Judith accedes to Loretta's request that she "can have the right to have babies" which Francis agrees to as symbolic of the struggle against the Romans, while Reg says it is part of Loretta's "struggle against reality".[78][79][80][81]
Loridonna Sofía Vergara Grilled 2006 A comedy film in which Sofía Vergara plays character of Loridonna, a sultry trans woman who seduces unsuspecting Maurice when he and Dave, two desperate meat salesmen, knock on her door.[82] A call from a suicidal friend interrupts signing the contract, so Maurice and Dave offer to drive her to her friend's house, hoping to close the deal. There, troubles multiply as they meet an arms dealer (Kim Coates) who outs Lori to Maurice just before they got intimate, then hit-men working for a gregarious mob boss (Burt Reynolds).
Mabel José Pecina Carmín Tropical 2014 An indigenous trans woman or muxe investigates the murder of her best friend.[83]
Marguerite Sondra Locke A Reflection of Fear 1972 One of the main characters is transgender.[84]
Marieta Mónica Cervera 20 centímetros 2005 A Spanish musical comedy about a narcoleptic trans woman during her transition from male to female.[85]
Misha Paula Marcenaro Solinge Girl Next 2021 To gain trust and attention from her husband, Misha reluctantly participates in a sex trafficking ring.
Ludovic Georges Du Fresne [fr] Ma vie en rose 1997 A Belgian film about a young child, Ludovic, who believes that she was born in the wrong body and should have been a girl.[86]
Roberta Muldoon John Lithgow The World According to Garp 1982 A former player for the Philadelphia Eagles who has gender re-assignment surgery. Roberta becomes the bodyguard of Jenny and one of the best friends of Garp.
Based on the book of the same name.[87][88]
Orlando Tilda Swinton Orlando 1992 Tilda Swinton portrays Orlando, a character whose sex changes after 2/3 of the film.[89][90]
Tanya Peters Anna Nicole Smith Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult 1994 Anna Nicole Smith's character, Tanya Peters, is revealed to be a transgender woman at the end of the film.[91]
Rayon Jared Leto Dallas Buyers Club 2013 Rayon is a transgender woman dying from AIDS.[92]
Ricky Michelle Hendley Boy Meets Girl 2014 Ricky, a transgender woman from rural Kentucky, awaiting acceptance into a New York fashion design school, learns about acceptance, friendship, sexuality and love.[93]
Hedwig Robinson John Cameron Mitchell Hedwig and the Angry Inch 2001 An off-Broadway cult musical adapted for cinema about a transgender German glam rocker recounting the story of her betrayal by her former boyfriend.[94][95]
Madame Rose Jin Xing Tom-Yum-Goong 2005 Known as The Protector in the US release, this is a foreign action film starring Tony Jaa. The main villain, Madame Rose, is a transgender woman in the international versions. The actress who plays Rose, Jin Xing, is transgender herself.[13]
Henrietta Rossi Clark Gregg The Adventures of Sebastian Cole 1998 Henrietta has gender reassignment surgery, which is protested by her stepson, Sebastian.[96]
Leon Shermer Chris Sarandon Dog Day Afternoon 1975 Sonny Wortzik's (Al Pacino) lover is a transgender woman (based on Elizabeth Eden). Sonny robs a bank to pay for her gender reassignment surgery. It is also mentioned that Sonny has children with his estranged wife, Angie (this led critic Tim Robey to call Sonny a "bisexual desperado").[97][98][99]
Sin-Dee Kitana Kiki Rodriguez Tangerine 2015 An independent film directed by Sean S. Baker where Kitana Kiki Rodriguez and Mya Taylor play the main protagonists, two transgender women, Sin-Dee and Alexandra respectively.[100]
Alexandra Mya Taylor
Strella Mina Orfanou Strella 2009 A young transgender prostitute named Strella meets Yorgos when he is released from prison after 14 years of incarceration for a murder he committed in his small Greek village.[101]
Tobio Kwancharu Shitichai Wild Zero 1999 Protagonist, Ace, falls in love with a transgender woman named Tobio he meets at a gas station on his way to a concert. He returns to her in time to rescue her from a horde of zombies and when the main character is conflicted about falling in love with a "woman who is also a man", Guitar Wolf tells him "Love knows no race, nationality or gender!"[102]
Vanessa Harmony Santana Gun Hill Road 2011 A drama about a recently released ex-convict coping with her estranged wife and daughter, who is going through transition from male to female.[103]
Lara Verhaegen Victor Polster Girl 2018 Lara Verhaegen, the main character, is a trans girl in training to become a ballerina.[104] Over the course of the story she seeks hormone replacement therapy and sex reassignment surgery.
Veronica David Dencik En Soap 2006 A Danish film, which translates to "A Soap" in English, about the love between a (pre-operative) trans woman and a lesbian.[85]
Marina Vidal Daniela Vega A Fantastic Woman 2017 A film by Chilean director Sebastián Lelio about a trans woman grieving the sudden death of her boyfriend.[105]
Elvira Weishaupt Volker Spengler In a Year of 13 Moons 1978 A Rainer Werner Fassbinder film focused on the brutal cruelty faced on an everyday basis by a trans woman.[106]
Wendy Anne Heywood I Want What I Want 1972 This film portrays an unhappy boy who tries to fulfill her "dreams of becoming a beautiful woman."[25][107]
Wye Leyna Bloom Port Authority 2019 Wye is a black trans woman who participates in New York City's ball culture.[108]
Fender Robin Williams Robots 2005 Fender is a trans woman who transitions to a woman during the last half of the film after an adventure in a "chop shop" and embraces her new identify for the duration of the film.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Citations[edit]

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