Having said she “wants to be based in girl mode” from now on, actor and comedian Eddie Izzard has adopted “she” and “her” pronouns.
If you don’t know Eddie Izzard from her decades-long career as one of the UK’s finest stand-up comedians, you’ll almost certainly recognise her from roles in Hollywood films like Oceans 12/13 and hit TV shows like Hannibal. She made the announcement about her pronouns while appearing on the Sky Arts series Portrait Artist of the Year, where she also clarified that she identifies as gender-fluid.
Following her announcement, LGBT charity Stonewall has praised her decision to go public with her gender identity. Robbie de Santos, the charity’s associate director of communications and campaigns, said: “Being open about using different pronouns is often incredibly difficult, especially in the public eye – her courageous decision will mean a lot to trans and gender-fluid communities around the world.”
Izzard has been known throughout her career for wearing feminine clothing, and has previously described herself as “a complete boy plus half a girl” and “a lesbian trapped in a man’s body”. At one point she quipped, “They’re not women’s clothes. They’re my clothes. I bought them.”
This is not the first time Izzard has spoken publicly about her gender identity. In a 2017 interview with Hollywood Reporter, she discussed trans politics at length, shouted out Laverne Cox as “one of the greatest activists” and said: “I am essentially transgender. I have boy mode and girl mode. I do feel I have boy genetics and girl genetics.” It is, however, the first time she has adopted she/her pronouns exclusively.
A number of high-profile people have offered their encouragement to Izzard. Writer Shon Faye tweeted: “Good for Eddie Izzard asking for the pronouns she/her to be used so publicly. As far as I can gather, she isn't a trans woman - she's gender fluid - but prefers the feminine pronoun. Good for her.”
Comedian Shappi Khorsandi, meanwhile, tweeted, “I see Eddie Izzard is trending. I can’t tell you what she means to me as a comic. Rocked my comedy world when I was a teen and beyond. Changed everything, made room. I love her and this morning I’m very happy for her.”