In a new interview with The Guardian; Ellen Page talks about child stardom, her Vice TV show and why she had to stop living a lie. Along with the interview we are graced with a beautiful new photoshoot photographed by Amanda Friedman.
Within a few minutes of meeting the actor Ellen Page near her Los Angeles home, we’re talking about what she enjoys doing around here, which is going surfing with her girlfriend, artist Samantha Thomas. She likes to watch Thomas, the more experienced surfer, examine the waves. Thomas tells her which way to turn, based on movements in the water that Page can’t even see. “Particularly on days where there are onshore winds, so it’s kind of rough, she’ll say, ‘Oh, a wave’s coming at you, it’s a right, go right’ and I’m just like, ‘What are you looking at? You can read the ocean like that?’ It’s really hot,” she adds, the excitement in her gentle voice suggesting that she is quietly, but madly, in love.
There is nothing hugely remarkable about any of this, especially here in California, except that until February 2014 Page would have been unable to have such a conversation with a journalist. The actor who starred in Juno, Hard Candy and Whip It, all films about tough young women who go against the grain, was living a lie. She was pretending to be straight, or at least “lying by omission”, as she puts it, intent on fulfilling her acting ambitions without any adverse attention, even though she had been out of the closet with her loved ones for years. But the double life had started to take its toll on her sanity, so she decided, a month before the event, that she would come out during a speech at a Las Vegas conference for counsellors of young LGBT people. “I’m here today because I am gay,” she revealed, halfway through an eight-minute talk, to a standing ovation that began before she had even finished. It was Valentine’s Day.
Page was only 26, but had been acting professionally since the age of 10; at 20, she was nominated for an Academy Award for best actress for her role as the eponymous pregnant high-school student in Juno. The gulf between her public and private lives had been growing long enough. “I felt, let’s just please be done with this chapter of discomfort and sadness and anxiety, and hurting my relationships, and all those things that come with it,” she says now, sitting in the corner of a restaurant, in a baseball cap, sipping a green tea. “I felt guilty for not being a visible person for the community, and for having the privilege that I had and not using it. I had got to the point where I was telling myself, you know, you should feel guilty about this. I was an active participant in an element of Hollywood that is gross. I would never judge somebody else for not coming out, but for me, personally, it did start to feel like a moral imperative.”
The day after the speech, she flew straight to Montreal to do reshoots for her role as Kitty Pryde in X-Men: Days Of Future Past, and everyone there told her she seemed totally different. “And I was totally different! Just the immediacy of how much better I felt. I felt it in every cell of my body.”
Read the full interview at The Guardian.