Emma Corrin on Journey to Coming Out as Nonbinary, Thoughts on Gendered Awards Categories

A Murder at the End of the World star Emma Corrin is opening up about their coming out journey and their thoughts on gendered award categories.

The 28-year-old actor, who recently spoke with The Hollywood Reporter’s Awards Chatter podcast, came out as nonbinary and queer in 2021. At the time, Corrin asked to be referred to with she/they pronouns before later announcing they exclusively use they/them pronouns in 2022.

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That same month, it was announced that they would be starring in a West End adaptation of Virginia Woolf’s 1928 novel Orlando, which explores gender identity. Halfway through the story, the titular character, played by Corrin in the West End adaptation, identifies as a woman, having spent the first half of the story identifying as a man.

“It’s so beautifully done because it’s never explained, nor seemed to need any justification,” Corrin said of Orlando’s gender identity journey in the story. “As it shouldn’t,” they added.

When asked if the actor felt that the art they were engaging with fueled their real-life decision to change their pronouns to they/them on Instagram, Corrin remarked that it was “so funny” because they “didn’t know that that was around the same time.”

“I think you can’t separate those things,” they said. “I think that, undoubtedly, as my identity journey was progressing, the art I was doing was providing a lot of questions that I wanted answers for in terms of how I saw myself and also providing a lot of those answers.”

The actor later added that they felt like Orlando was a gift for where they were in their own identity journey. “It’s almost like an exercise that a therapist would give you,” Corrin said of the experience.

Corrin also weighed in on the subject of gendered awards categories. The actor is currently being promoted in the best actress in a limited series category for their work in A Murder at the End of the World, noting they feel it’s “undoubtable that there is more work to do.”

On the other hand, Corrin feels that some award shows have made strides in the right direction. “It felt really affirming to be at the Independent Spirit Awards and to be nominated in a performer category,” the actor said.

The awards show has done away with gendered categories instead opting to nominate actors of any gender in either a “best lead performance” and “best supporting performance” category. “It was amazing,” Corrin said. “You feel seen.” Corrin recognizes that there are “kinks to be worked out” but believes the best way forward is to include nonbinary voices in the discussion.

In terms of their awards eligibility, Corrin lamented that if they were to be nominated in the best actress category, the visibility would be the most important thing. They noted that the “worst case scenario” of the gendered awards categories conversation would be that nonbinary performers were altogether excluded.

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