But why? Men play men, women play women. So why shouldn't transgender people - provided they are considered as a another, a third sex, at all - not play transgender roles?
The answer to this question has more than one level. The most prominent reason is without doubt that transgender women long to be accepted by their environment as complete females.
So it`s rather unlikely for a transgender person to play the role of a person in a most complex and difficult chapter of life, when she herself has just scraped through it. You would not play a homeless, when you had once been homeless and you would not play the drinker when you had once been on the booze, would you?
Nevertheless I know some transgender actresses who play transgender roles.
And I watched too many movies and TV shows with transgender key roles that have been played by either men or women with an abundance of wrong stereotypes and cliché.
So maybe better leave it to the 'real' ones!
Laverne Cox is certainly the most famous African-American transgender actress and entertainer: She has produced and starred her own 8 episode makeover television series TRANSform Me in 2010.
As of late, she on the cast list of the latest net flix series 'Orange Is the New Black'.
Now, to contradict the lines I wrote above I admit: Laverne Cox is definetely woman enough to play a transgender role. Hence, in this women-in-prison drama Laverne plays the role of transgender inmate Sophia Burset. “The reality is you don’t often see trans characters played by trans folks and there aren’t a lot of trans roles written to begin with,” Cox told the New York Daily News.
Even more demanding: In an early episode the back story of character Sophia is told - when she worked as a fireman named Marcus who longed to be a woman. It was tempting for Cox to try and play that male role. After eight hours of hair and makeup to achieve a more masculine look she presented herself to director Jodie Foster. ’She didn’t think I was butch enough to pull it off!” Cox desribes Foster's reaction. So now, Cox' twin brother plays the 'male' part of Sophia Burset. Cox: I can walk down the street and hear somebody yell "That's a man!", so it is very comforting to hear somebeody say, that I wasn't butch enough'