In spite of the critical accolades, "Transparent" showrunner Jill Soloway's been under scrutiny lately for casting Jeffrey Tambor, a cisgender man, in the part of Maura Pfefferman, a trans woman. In a HuffPost Live interview on Monday, actress Amy Landecker admitted that she could see why the casting choice would be "frustrating" for the trans community, but defended Soloway's decision.
"She casts from a very personal place," the actress told host Josh Zepps. Soloway has a trans father of her own, and "in her mind, she would see Jeffrey through the years and he reminded her of her father and I think she felt very deeply that he was the right actor for this part."
Landecker, who plays Maura's eldest daughter in the Amazon series, thinks Tambor's "stunning performance" and "compassionate" portrayal deserves much of the credit for the show's success, and stands by the show's casting.
"This show is great in large part because of him," she said. "And I think what Jill tried to do -- look, the truth is: he's one of the greatest actors, he wanted to play this, she [Soloway] feels connected to him, [and the character's] also pre-transition when we start the show."
Tambor is the only cisgender actor featured in a trans role on the show. Trans actors Ian Harvie and Alexandra Billings also star, and Landecker mentioned many of the show's writers and camera operators were also trans.
"She [Soloway] had a commitment though in all the areas of production to feel like she is including the trans community, and it's hired the most trans actors of any show that's ever been done on television," she said.
The actress also touched upon how "Transparent" could literally save lives, comparing it to how "Will & Grace" attempted to normalize gay culture for people in the nineties. See the video below for more.
Watch the rest of Amy Landecker's conversation with HuffPost Live here. Sign up here for Live Today, HuffPost Live's new morning email that will let you know the newsmakers, celebrities and politicians joining us that day and give you the best clips from the day before!