Thursday night, while promoting her upcoming Netflix series the Umbrella Academy, Ellen Page paid the Late Show with Stephen Colbert a visit. The conversation never really got to the new show—instead, around the two-minute mark, Colbert brought up the first time he interviewed her, five years ago, not long after she came out. The conversation shifted to the topic of Hollywood’s inclusion of LGBTQ actors (or lack thereof) and without missing a beat, Page responded:
“There’s clear evidence that [Hollywood] has changed, that there’s some progress. There’s some more representation but I honestly think we need to hurry up. It’s not cutting it. Hollywood, and the film industry in particular, is just so binary and it is so, I find, narrow in its ideas of who can tell stories and who can be in the stories. I hope it continues to change.”
She then turned her attention to “the media that is saying it’s a debate whether what happened to Jussie Smollett”—the out Empire actor who was violently attacked Tuesday morning in Chicago—“was a hate crime,” before discussing the beliefs of Mike Pence, and the immediate, clear through-line between homophobic rhetoric and violence:
“I’m really fired up tonight but it feels impossible not to feel this way right now with the President and the Vice President Mike Pence, who wishes I couldn’t be married, let’s just be clear. The Vice President of America wishes I didn’t have the love [I have] with my wife. He wanted to ban that in Indiana. He believes in conversion therapy. He has hurt LGBTQ people so badly as the governor of Indiana. I think the thing we need to know—and I hope my show Gaycation did this, in terms of connecting the dots between what happened with Jussie, I don’t know him personally, I send him all of my love—[is how to] connect the dots. This is what happens. If you are in a position of power and you hate people and you want to cause suffering to them, you go through the trouble, you spend your career trying to cause suffering.
What do you think is going to happen? Kids are going to be abused and they’re going to kill themselves. People are going to be beaten on the street. I have traveled the world and I have met the most marginalized people you could meet. I’m lucky to have this time and this privilege to say this. This needs to fucking stop.”
Watch the conversation below.