Elliot Page’s Name Came From a Favorite Childhood Movie

When actor Elliot Page came out as transgender in 2020, it took fans time to adjust to his new name and pronouns (he/him or they/them). The Umbrella Academy star understands this. But he provided an anecdote as to where his name came from that may help some remember it better.

Elliot Page began acting as a child

Elliot Page in a baseball cap
Elliot Page | Rich Polk/Getty Images for IMDb

Page broke out as the teenage star of Hard Candy in 2005. “I became a professional actor at the age of 10,” Page said in a 2021 Time profile. Soon after, his turns in the X-Men film franchise and the hit indie film Juno sent the actor sky-rocketing to fame, landing even more significant roles.

Page came out as gay in 2014 and began to take on more parts as a lesbian woman, requesting a masculine wardrobe for his characters. “The difference in how I felt before coming out as gay to after was massive,” explained the actor. “But did the discomfort in my body ever go away? No, no, no, no.”

He announced his name in 2020

On December 1, 2020, Page posted a note on his social media profiles. “Hi friends, I want to share with you that I am trans, my pronouns are he/they and my name is Elliot,” he wrote. “I love that I am trans. And I love that I am queer,” Page continued, noting his plan to “change this world for the better.”

The outpouring of support was immediate. Actors such as Mark Ruffalo, Josh Gad, Patrick Stewart, and many more chimed in on Twitter. LGBTQ icons like James Charles, Jen Richards, and Raquel Willis offered up their own kind words. Of course, not all of the response was positive, but much of it was.

Page spoke about those who inspired him

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Page dedicated the Time article to his community. “With deep respect for those who came before me, gratitude for those who have supported me & great concern for the generation of trans youth we must all protect, please join me and decry anti-trans legislation, hate & discrimination in all its forms,” he wrote on Twitter.

While transgender representation in Hollywood remains limited at best, recent years brought more to the screen. And Page takes note of those who’ve paved the way, citing “trailblazing trans icons like [director] Janet Mock and [actor] Laverne Cox,” both of whom also work with Netflix.

‘E.T.’ helped him choose his name

Though Page chose a name that somewhat resembles his dead name (that’s the name he was known by before December 1, 2020), the inspiration for “Elliot” came, appropriately, from a film. “I loved E.T. when I was a kid and always wanted to look like the boys in the movies,” he said.

In fact, Page loves the Steven Spielberg sci-fi fantasy so much that he has a tattoo of one of its most-quoted lines. The ink reads “E.P. PHONE HOME,” with the actor substituting their last initial for the “T” for “Terrestrial.” E.T. made a huge impression on audiences and the film landscape as a whole, and clearly, it affected one of its then-future stars as well.