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lilly wachowski encourages viewers to reconsider 'the matrix' through the lens of transness

In her first public appearance since coming out as a trans woman, the writer and director called recent efforts to revisit her films through the prism of gender ‘cool,’ after giving a sarcastic nod to the British tabloid that threatened to publicly out...

by Emily Manning
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Apr 4 2016, 4:20pm

Director Lilly Wachowski made her first public appearance as a trans woman on Saturday night in Los Angeles when she accepted the GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Drama Series for Sense8, the Netflix series she wrote and created with Changeling writer J. Michael Straczynski and her sister, Lana. Noting the serendipity of the event's timing in proximity to her coming out, Lilly thanked "the fabulous people at GLAAD" for their support, and gave a sarcastic shout out to "the extremely sensitive and courteous people at the Daily Mail."

"Where do we find the courage to break free from the boxes of our lives, to transcend and overcome tragedy — the monsters within and the violence we due to ourselves when we are too afraid to be who we really are?" Lilly asked her fellow attendees — among them Taylor Swift, who made a surprise appearance to present her friend Ruby Rose with the Stephen F. Kolzak Award. She spoke about the issues that shape Sense8, a science fiction series in which strangers across the world become inexplicably mentally and emotionally linked to one another. Sense8— which arrives nearly 20 years after Bound, the Wachowskis' debut feature length film — was created to "address themes that have rarely been addressed in mainstream TV and never this blatantly in a nominally science-fiction series: issues of gender, identity, sexuality and politics," says Straczynski.

"There's a critical eye being cast back on Lana and I's work through the lens of our transness," Wachowski said of recent efforts to re-contextualize the siblings' work, most notably their iconic trilogy, The Matrix. "This is a cool thing," noted Lilly, "because it's an excellent reminder that art is never static. And while the ideas of identity and transformation are critical components in our work, the bedrock that all ideas rest upon is love."

Watch all of Lilly's acceptance speech when the GLAAD Media Awards ceremony airs tonight on Logo.

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Text Emily Manning