The Orange Is the New Black star made the comments this week during a Q&A in New York and a magazine interview.
Taking part in a Q&A session for Black History Month last week in New York City, Laverne Cox made comments about being a black, transgender woman, the difficulty in finding roles and romance, and how “for me, it’s Black History Month every month, to be real. And for me, black history is American history.”
The talk, which was hosted by Essence entertainment editor Cori Murray at Macy’s Herald Square, was held to discuss how Laverne had blazed her own path and how the connection to her heritage helped inspire success.
Talking about how hard it can be for someone in a similar position trying to find acting roles, she said at the event:
Certainly there are fewer opportunities for someone like me being black and being trans and being a woman. In the face of that, it’s not bad. The truth is I’m one of the lucky ones. The question for me becomes… as I produce, how to bring other people along for the ride.
The two-time Emmy nominated actress and recent Cosmopolitan cover girl also spoke about how she often feels that casting directors “don’t necessarily consider me” for roles, and that “as a black trans woman, I’ve often been kept a secret by the men I’ve dated.”
Cox also added that “when my ex-boyfriend introduced me to his dad and invited me to spend Hanukkah with him and his family, it was the most special thing ever. Trans women deserve to be loved out in the open and in the light.”
Prior to the event, Kristyn Doar-Page, Macy’s vice president of Diversity & Inclusion Strategies, said that the series of events, which also featured Issa Rae at a separate talk, was an opportunity to highlight the careers of these ground-breaking stars.
As a retailer committed to celebrating trailblazers, Macy’s is thrilled to open a space where our community can engage with these artists as they share their life stories and inspirations.
Meanwhile, Laverne has also released a music video for her debut single ‘Beat For The Gods’. The club-ready track serves as a homage to “the kids who vogue, the kids who drag, the nightclub scene.”
Speaking to OUT Magazine about the one-off track, Cox said:
I want people to just live, and have a Kiki, and take it as that. I want it to be a celebration of queer culture and LGBTQ club culture. This song is a reflection of my old club days in New York, and a sort of longing for that kind of situation.
Check out the fierce music video below, which sees Laverne take on a number of different roles including a boxer and a dazzling Marie Antoinette look.