2007 was a career-defining year for Canadian actress Ellen Page thanks to her widely beloved role in “Juno”.
“Juno”, the independent film about a Minnesota high schooler’s unwanted pregnancy, celebrates its 10th birthday this December and LA Weekly sat down with Page to reflect on the movie’s cultural impact.
Page, 30, will reprise her role as Juno MacGuff at director Jason Reitman “Live Read” series alongside co-star Jennifer Garner on Saturday, April 8. When asked if Page would show up to the live reading in costume, the Halifax-native laughed. “The way I dress isn’t that different from Juno, to be honest,” she explained. “I’ll go as myself, which isn’t that far from Juno.”
The Oscar-nominated actress reflected on the first time she ever read the movie’s Oscar-winning screenplay. “I was just utterly blown away and taken in: ‘Holy s**t! This is so phenomenal and unique and I have to play this girl,'” she exclaimed. “That feeling of excitement, laughter, tears… I’m excited about celebrating this beautiful thing she wrote. It still moves a lot of people.”
The film’s plot sees Page’s character going to an abortion clinic and ultimately choosing to go through with her pregnancy and give her baby up for adoption. The theme is one that resonates with many pro-choice and Planned Parenthood supporters. “For women, LGBTQ people, low-income people, what have you, human beings not having access to health care is getting in the way of progress,” Page said.
“It’s really terrifying. It does seem like everybody’s coming together for all these fundraisers to support Planned Parenthood and all the work that they do.”
The “X-Men” star also juxtaposed Canada and the United States’ stances on abortions. “In Canada I didn’t grow up with this sort of debate. For me personally, Planned Parenthood is just about people having access to life-saving health care, whether it’s about trying to get an abortion or Pap smears, or it’s a trans woman seeking health care or a low-income person, it’s pivotal and important,” she continued. “It’s just that simple. To deny people’s rights is horrific. Imagine all the queer people who are already suffering who can lose access to health care. It’s just life or death. That’s the reality.”
Page, who came out as gay in 2014, balances her acting duties and activism duties — particularly with her Vice series “Gaycation”. “The plan is to continue with ‘Gaycation’ but it’s going to change a bit, get more micro and nuanced and tell different stories,” she said of the series’ future.
“I’m hoping to expand it, potentially bring in new people to host so it’s not always me on the camera. We want to figure out a way to make it more diverse in terms of where it can be viewed.”