I felt so seen: Pose star Mj Rodriguez becomes first trans person nominated for a major acting Emmy
Pose star Mj Rodriguez created history by becoming the first trans person to score a major acting Emmy nomination.
"I felt represented and I felt seen," said Rodriguez, who plays house mother and nurse Blanca in Pose. "And ... more accepted than I have felt in a long time. I felt like my colleagues now see me, my acting colleagues see me, and the people who are surrounded by the arts see me, and how much I want to give the world the love to my craft and my art," he added.
Pose, a show about ballroom culture in the 1980s and ’90s by Steven Canals and Ryan Murphy, broke ground with the casting of transgender actors as trans characters. The nomination for Rodriguez was one of several nods for the show, including best actor for Billy Porter and best drama.
Rodriguez, 30, who is presently attending the Cannes film festival, told Associated Press, "The moment my name was announced, I just screamed and I broke. And my mom grabbed me. She kind of like flung me around. I gave her a hug. She swung me around a little bit. And I just remember falling into my boyfriend’s arms and just crying. Tears of joy, tears of happiness."
Sarah Kate Ellis of GLAAD, the LGBTQ+ organization, called her nomination "a breakthrough for transgender women in Hollywood, and a long-overdue recognition for her groundbreaking performance over the past three seasons of Pose" — a show that, Ellis said, "undoubtedly raised the bar for trans representation on television and changed the way viewers around the world understand the trans community."
The group had joined with dozens of other organizations in an open letter urging Emmy voters to show their support for the show and especially for its transgender and nonbinary actors.
On the work front, Rodriguez is working on her next project, a comedy with Maya Rudolph. Talking about her future, Rodriguez said, "I just feel like the sky is limitless... I feel like there’s so much more opportunity out there. The world — it’s opened, and I can’t even express how happy I am to know that I’ll be able to be a part of more amazing pieces of work … and just put out good products. I know that’s what the future looks like."
With inputs from IANS