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Lilly Wachowski Acknowledges Re-Examination of The Matrix With Lens Focused on Transness

Lilly Wachowski recently delivered a speech at the GLAAD Media Awards, where she was accepting an award for Sense8, which had won Best Outstanding Drama. During her speech, she acknowledges the temporal convergences of certain auspicious events all happening within the same month she came out as trans: the Trans Day of Visibility, International Women’s Day, the 20 year anniversary of Bound (one of the Wachowskis’ first films), and of course, Pi Day. Perhaps more importantly, she acknowledges this trend of people going back and reviewing the Wachowski siblings’ work with a different lens, one that takes their transness into account.

She specifically said, “There’s a critical eye being cast back on Lana and I’s work through the lens of our transness. This is a cool thing 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.” This re-examination of their films like The Matrix is something that you can (and should!) try at home. With The Matrix in particular, it’s pretty obvious where the themes of transformation, self-image, and identity all come into play. It’s about one person’s struggle with and eventual acceptance of an identity that exists beyond the borders of a rigidly defined system.

In fact, here’s a game you can play at home: if you change just about every instance of the words “the Matrix” in the movie with “gender binary,” you get a very interesting take on the movie, one that resided just under the surface, waiting to be discovered… kind of like the Matrix, eh?

That being said, her mention of love as a bedrock is incredibly poignant. It’s one of the greatest motivators, and much of their work examines love in all its forms: love for your friends, love for your enemies, and love for yourself.

The video above is only a clip of the full speech. You can catch the full thing when the GLAAD Media Awards ceremony premieres tonight.

(via i-D/Vice)

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Jessica Lachenal is a writer who doesn’t talk about herself a lot, so she isn’t quite sure how biographical info panels should work. But here we go anyway. She's the Weekend Editor for The Mary Sue, a Contributing Writer for The Bold Italic (, and a Staff Writer for Spinning Platters ( She's also been featured in Model View Culture and Frontiers LA magazine, and on Autostraddle. She hopes this has been as awkward for you as it has been for her.