Elliot Page felt like a boy from childhood, but, upon breaking into the acting industry, he "had to look a certain way," the 34-year-old tells Time in his first interview since coming out as transgender. The extensive cover story, which is worth a read in full, delves into topics ranging from the response to his announcement ("a lot of support and love and a massive amount of hatred and transphobia") to the strange sensation of becoming famous for his roles as females, including in Juno ("I just never recognized myself"), to his decision to get top surgery: "It has completely transformed my life," he says, calling it "not only life-changing but lifesaving."
He suffered from depression, anxiety, and panic attacks before coming out, and he did so at a time when transphobic rhetoric and anti-trans crimes are increasing. "Extremely influential people are spreading these myths and damaging rhetoric—every day you’re seeing our existence debated,” Page says. “Transgender people are so very real." Read the full interview here. (Read more Elliot Page stories.)