The first picture of Eddie Redmayne playing transgender pioneer Lili Elbe
has been unveiled.
Redmayne - who just last week (February 22) won a the Best Actor Oscar for his performance as Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything -
will portray the 20th century trans artist in upcoming film The Danish Girl,
directed by Tom Hooper.
Set in the 1920s, the film tells the story of a Danish artist Einar Wegener, who was persuaded by her wife - also a painter - to pose in women's clothing for her. Einar later began male-to-female transition and changed her name to Lili Elbe.
Redmayne says he has been "observing the minutiae of feminine physicality", in preparation for the role, and has been working with the same movement director who helped him portray Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything.
"We’re looking at everything from a feminine perspective," Redmayne told The Daily Mail
. "How to sit, to walk, to pose, roll on a pair of stockings. How to put on a pair of heels - and how to walk in them. Everything.
"I think it’s the most sensitive role I have played,’ he added. "The danger of surgery was so extreme then. It’s such a brave thing that Einar did."
Lile Elbe travelled to Germany for gender confirmation surgery in 1930, during which time such procedures were only in experimental phases. Her case became a sensation in newspapers of Denmark and Germany, while the King of Denmark invalidated the her marriage to her wife Gerda in October 1930,
After undergoing five operations over a period of two years, Elbe died in 1932 aged 48, after suffering complications after failed uterus transplant.
The Danish Girl -
which is already being considered a contender for next year's awards season - is expected to be released towards the end of 2015.
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