Queer ally Jamie Lee Curtis has announced she will refer to her Academy Award by they/them pronouns as a way of honoring her trans daughter. Curtis revealed the news to "Today" hosts Hoda Kotb and Savannah Guthrie on Tuesday.
“Have we named her?” Guthrie asked Curtis, who was appearing via video.
“I’m in support of my daughter, Ruby,” Curtis responded. “I’m having them be a they/them. I’m just going to call them they/them … and they are doing great. They’re settling in, and I just, in my life, I never saw it in a million years that I’d have this couple days. And I’m very moved by the whole thing.”
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Ruby Guest, 27, accompanied their mother to the Oscar ceremony. Curtis spoke about Ruby as well as trans and women’s issues backstage in the press room.
“I would like to see a lot more women be nominated so there’s gender parity in all the branches,” she said. “We’re getting there, [but] we’re not anywhere near there.
“The inclusivity involves the bigger question,” Curtis went on. “How do you include everyone? As the mother of a trans daughter, I understand that. But to de-gender the category I’m concerned will diminish the opportunities for more women.”
Curtis, 64, got her start in Hollywood appearing on the ABC sitcom "Operation Petticoat" in 1977. The following year she made her film debut playing Laurie Strode in the classic horror film "Halloween." She would reprise the role for six of the film’s many, many follow-ups, most recently in "Halloween Ends" in 2022.
But Curtis has always been more than just a Scream Queen. She’s appeared in dozens of films through the years including hits like "Trading Places," "Freaky Friday," "A Fish Called Wanda," "Christmas with the Kranks," "Knives Out" and "True Lies," for which she won a Golden Globe award.
Curtis took home the Oscar for best supporting actress for her role in the organically queer film "Everything Everywhere All at Once," which swept the Oscars this year.
Curtis is, of course, the daughter of Hollywood legends actress Janet Leigh, of "Psycho" fame, and actor Tony Curtis. In 2019, Curtis told Pride Source’s Chris Azzopardi that she grew up around queer people because her parents were surrounded by LGBTQ+ people.
“Her make-up artist was gay,” said Curtis of her mother. “The playwright that she did a play with was a great friend of our family who was gay. I did not know any gay kids growing up, but I was propositioned in school once by a girl.”
Curtis went on to tell Azzopardi that “you don’t have to have your own experience in order to feel compassion and the need for justice and equality. In the LGBTQ world, certainly I have friends and family. But I don’t have to have the direct experience in order to feel the compassion that I truly feel for acceptance and equality in all areas.”