Laverne Cox’s Twin Brother Played Her Character In an ‘Orange Is the New Black’ Flashback

Laverne Cox is a popular actor, well known for her work in the hit Netflix series Orange Is the New Black. In addition to her work as an actor, Cox is an outspoken advocate for the transgender community.

Cox might be an award-winning actor now, but she hasn’t always had an easy time of it, especially in her early years. Cox has had to work very hard for her success, but when she made it big, she had no problem sharing the spotlight with those who have supported her over the years — including her twin brother, whom she actually welcomed on Orange Is the New Black for a special guest role. 

How did Laverne Cox become famous?

Laverne Cox staring at the camera while on the red carpet and smiling. She's wearing black and has her blonde hair down.
Laverne Cox | Jason Merritt/Getty Images

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Laverne Cox was born in Alabama in 1972. Cox had some issues as a child and even struggled with suicidal thoughts before ultimately turning to the arts as a means of self-expression.

Cox eventually graduated from the Alabama School of Fine Arts, where she studied dance as well as creative writing. She moved to New York City after several more years in college, in order to pursue an acting career.

Cox’s early acting roles were primarily in reality shows, but she also appeared in some high-profile television shows like Law & Order: Special Victim’s Unit. In 2013, Cox got her big break when she was cast in the brand-new Netflix series Orange Is the New Black

Laverne Cox is best known for her role in ‘Orange Is the New Black’

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Cox’s role as Sophia Burset, a trans woman who is serving time for credit card fraud, brought the actress a great deal of fame. Not only did Cox make headlines for her hilarious and insightful performance, but it gave her a platform to speak out on issues that affect the transgender community.

For her work in the series, Cox became the first openly transgender person to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award in any acting category.

Cox has earned legions of fans for her open, honest approach to acting and life, and regularly takes time to speak out for others in the transgender community. She has also worked with high-profile women in pop culture, including Meghan Markle and Taylor Swift. These days, post- Orange Is the New Black, Cox is focused on other acting projects, creating a new path for herself in the entertainment space. 

Laverne Cox’s brother appeared in ‘Orange Is the New Black’

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Although Cox had some tough times growing up, she has remained close with some of her family members, including her twin brother, musician M. Lamar. In fact, in one notable story arc in Orange Is the New Black, Cox’s brother was featured in a prime role — that of Sophia Burset, pre-transitional surgery.

While Lamar’s role is relatively small, it is a significant moment for both the show and the character. Cox later revealed that “I love my brother so much … in so many ways, he’s been my moral compass over the years. Like, I run things by him and he’s … we’re twins, so we’ve literally known each other our entire lives.”

Cox went on to detail how, “there’s a wonderful bond that we share, and there’s a tremendous amount of respect that we have for each other as artists and as human beings. So I’m really grateful that I got to share a little bit of this show and this moment with him.”