As you get older, the way you see and interact with the world naturally starts to shift. With experience comes the confidence to question things you may have once thought were acceptable, but now seem off. Imagine a time when a co-worker, friend, or family member made an inappropriate comment that you brushed off at first. But as time passed, your discomfort slowly began to sink in and you found yourself regretful that you didn’t speak up. This happens so often in our daily lives.
Now, add in Hollywood and these moments are immortalized. Any time you rewatch your favorite movies and TV series, it’s inevitable that you’ll pick up on moments that were once funny, but now seem really awkward and more often than not, super inappropriate.
Celebrities aren’t immune to that secondhand embarrassment either. Actor and activist Elliot Page, who has done an extensive job championing LGBTQ+ rights and consistently calls out the entertainment industry for its lack of diversity, experienced that same regret when revisiting one of his most critically acclaimed films (via Screen Daily).
Here’s what he had to say about a scene he filmed that came off as lighthearted and humorous at the time, but in hindsight, really missed the mark.
Elliot Page would 100 percent take back this joke from Juno if he could
When coming of age film Juno first premiered in 2007, it became a huge hit and with reason. Centering around a young teen’s (played by Page) decision to give up their baby for adoption, it sparked conversation around serious topics like teen pregnancy, unplanned pregnancy, adoption, and abortion. It also highlights the importance of choice (via Mental Floss). These are just a few reasons why Juno has resonated with so many fans. But just because it’s well-loved doesn’t mean that it gets everything right.
In an interview with Bustle, Page was honest and reflective about the controversy behind a scene in Juno. As Juno brainstorms possible baby names, Jason Bateman’s character Mark Loring suggests “Madison”, which Juno calls “a little gay.” Page admits that he wasn’t aware of how problematic this was until years later. “It wasn’t something I totally registered at the time, but, of course, now that I’m older I do. So many movies I loved as a kid are just rampant with homophobia and transphobia and biphobia, and I’m not excusing it by any means,” he explained.
Cognizant of this, Page bypassed the line completely during a table read for Planned Parenthood. Although it wasn’t intentional, owning up to this shows that jokes like this are unacceptable, period, and only divide people further. People in the LGBTQ+ community can often feel unseen, so this move, while small, is necessary.
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