Eddie Izzard says trans and women's rights 'shouldn't be fought against each other' (exclusive)

The trans comedian tells Yahoo UK she feels "time will pass" and transphobia will diminish

Watch: Eddie Izzard explains why trans and women's rights shouldn't be pitted against each other

Eddie Izzard has shared criticism for people who sow discord between the transgender community and cis-women, as she tells Yahoo UK the two group's rights "shouldn't be fought against each other".

The trans comedian, who will soon star in Hammer Horror film Doctor Jekyll, says society is currently at a "tipping point" where the two are depicted in several public spheres as being at odds with each other when they are anything but.

"It's like before marriage equality happened, there was a lot of anti-gay and lesbian ideas of couples being together [and people saying] 'surely that's a bad thing'," Izzard reflects.

"And then we went through marriage equality and a lot of positive countries have done it, and people realised 'oh, it's about love' and all those arguments have sort of drifted away.

Eddie Izzard in Doctor Jekyll (Hammer films)
Eddie Izzard has criticised the argument that trans and women's rights should be pitted against each other, as she reflected on starring in Doctor Jekyll (Hammer films)

"Some transphobic people [are] out there and they're gonna get very loud right at this moment, and then that time will pass and we will go through that and we will go to a place where it's live and let live, and [we] just say 'people exist'.

"Women's rights are human rights, Trans rights are human rights, end of story."Eddie Izzard

"They shouldn't be fought against each other, that's a right wing ideology and they're trying to set people against people, that's just not good."

Recent years have seen advocates for feminism like Harry Potter author JK Rowling start a debate around women's rights and transgender rights.

In June 2020 Rowling made a series of posts on X, formerly known as Twitter, responding to a story about "people who menstruate”, the first of which said: “‘People who menstruate’. I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?”

Rowling also went on to publish an essay online in which she said — as a domestic violence survivor — she felt allowing trans people to use single-sex bathrooms and changing rooms could be "offering cover to predators", as a result she has been accused of transphobia.

Eddie Izzard in Doctor Jekyll (Hammer films)
Eddie Izzard plays the dual character of Nina Jekyll and Rachel Hyde in Doctor Jekyll, which she argues has no bearing on the story (Hammer films)

Referencing the dual roles she plays in horror film Doctor Jekyll of Nina Jekyll and Rachel Hyde, Izzard adds: "In our film I happen to be a player a trans character, I happen to be a trans woman, doesn't actually affect the story. The story's about dark power and how that could be inside someone in a mystical story."

Joe Stephenson, who directs Doctor Jekyll, concurred Izzard's sentiment, sharing: "I think we'll get to a point where it is the same as it was when in the 80s you had people being very confidently homophobic in public.

"The same thing will happen in 10 or 15 years, those people who are being so confidently anti-trans today will be telling us that '2022 was a different time, we didn't know any better'.

"It will be up to us to decide if we want to forgive them or not. But I do think we'll get to that point."Joe Stephenson

Izzard, who is standing for Labour MP for Brighton Pavilion, goes on: "I absolutely feel we will. Most people in the world live, let live.

Eddie Izzard and Lindsay Duncan in Doctor Jekyll (Hammer films)
Eddie Izzard added that she felt "some transphobic people [are] out there and they're gonna get very loud right at this moment, and then that time will pass" (Hammer films)

"I know this and as someone heading towards politics, and people in the streets are saying 'yeah, good for you, be yourself, your own authentic self.'

"It's being honest and there's hatred coming the other way, well it's been out in the world for some time, it is dark and we're just trying to be open and positive and have a cup of tea and say hi."

Doctor Jekyll will be released exclusively in UK cinemas on Friday, 27 October.

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