Laverne Cox’s star power has been steadily rising over the past year as she’s not only maintained her role on the critically acclaimed “Orange Is the New Black” but also landed major roles in projects like the upcoming CBS legal drama series “Doubt.” And another major project Cox has been working on is FOX’s TV reboot of the camp cult classic film The Rocky Horror Picture Show. And while some have praised Cox being cast in the film, others have blasted her inclusion and the reboot itself. Now, Cox is responding to her critics and explaining why they need to give her and the film a chance.
Cox was cast in the iconic role of Dr. Frank-N-Furter, a cross-dressing, psychopathic mad scientist who is bent on creating the perfect sexual plaything for himself. The role was made into a pop culture icon by legendary actor Tim Curry more than 40 years ago and while some have said that Cox is the perfect person to take on the role, others say her gender identity is problematic.
According to media reports, some critics feel that Curry’s role was subversive and groundbreaking in combatting sexual and gender norms back in the ’70s. However, other critics are complaining that Cox playing a cross-dressing cisgender man will only serve to bolster stereotypes that trans people are just cross dressers and that their gender identity isn’t valid or real.
Well, Cox recently spoke about the criticism and explained that she took the role a lot more seriously than some critics are giving her credit for.
“People can be very … challenging and critical, but I put everything I had into this,” Cox explained. “I gave 250 percent, and I hope people like what we came up with.”
Cox also explained that she understands why die hard fans are so critical of the reboot.
“Rocky Horror is sacred to people,” she said. “It’s the longest-running movie in theater history, in movie history. For 41 years, people have been going to midnight showings and dressing up. … It means so much to so many people.”
However, she explained earlier this year that she spoke with Curry about the role and that he gave her his blessing for the reboot.
“He wants me to do my own thing with it. … We sort of talked about what he was thinking when he did it, and we talked about his intentions with certain moments,” she said.
Well, we don’t think that Cox’s role will do anything like set the transgender movement back. If anything, when the movie airs on Halloween 2016, we think it will serve to put a transgender person in the center of a national conversation about gender expression and allow for more people to question gender norms in society. Plus, it will definitely help Cox’s star power rise even higher if it’s a good film.