Two Oscars, two transformations—and for the first, playing Brandon Teena in the utterly devastating Boys aren’t supposed to crySwank cut her hair and taped her breasts. Then she stuffed her pants as Brandon did in the movie. Swank ventured out to her Los Angeles-area neighborhood and identified herself as James’ brother, Hilary.

Swank stated that she was not treated the same in public. New York Times 1999. Shopkeepers would have been more attentive if she thought she was a boy. Then she said, “If people can’t determine what I am, they don’t want any to do with me.”

The film was based on an unfortunate true story. Brandon was killed by two friends, but he found out that he was biologically a woman. Swank was not prepared for this, and she ended up having her then-husband make the movie. Chad LoweJoin her for the shoot. She stated that she had told her husband it was difficult to get through the set. “I needed to be able to see that it actually did happen to somebody.”

Determined, compassionate commitment to do the character justice aside, Swank acknowledged to Variety In 2020, a trans actor would have a better chance of playing the part if it were to be made.

Swank said that when the documentary was created, it wasn’t clear that transgender people were actually walking the streets saying, “Hey! I’m trans.” Trans people are living happily and having a good life 21 years later. [although]We still have much to do in terms of their safety and inclusion, but there are now trans actors that would be great for the role. They also have the chance to audition.