Elliot Page experienced a physical breakdown after being pressured to wear a dress to a premiere screening of the movie Inception in 2010, the transgender star revealed in a TV interview with Oprah Winfrey that was set to debut Friday.
The Hollywood star formerly known as Ellen Page told Winfrey that a manager offered a choice of three dresses for the Paris premiere of the Christopher Nolan film.
“I lost it, it was like a cinematic moment. That night, after the premiere at the after-party, I collapsed,” Page told Winfrey, according to a report from Insider. “That’s something that’s happened frequently in my life, usually corresponding with a panic attack.”
“Ultimately, of course, it’s every experience you’ve had since you were a toddler, people saying, ‘The way you’re sitting is not ladylike, you’re walking like a boy. The music you’re listening to as a teenager,’ obviously, the way you dress. Every single aspect of who you are constantly being looked at and put in a box in a very binary system. That’s what it leads to.”
The Oprah interview is Elliot Page’s first sit-down TV appearance since the star’s transgender announcement in December. During the conversation, Page recalled the success of the movie Juno and being nominated for best actress.
“I remember it felt so impossible to communicate with people how unwell I was because obviously there is so much excitement,” Page reportedly said. “The film unexpectedly became a big hit, I became quite known, all these things and I felt I couldn’t express just the degree of pain I was in.”
“So the Oscars, for example, I could not look at a photo from that red carpet,” Page said.
In preview clips posted online, Elliot Page breaks down in tears while explaining the feeling of being a man.
“Getting out of the shower and the towel’s around your waist, looking at yourself in the mirror and you’re just like, ‘There I am,’” Page said. “It’s being able to touch my chest and feel comfortable in my body for probably the first time.”