This week I talked with writer-actress Jen Richards about her fabulous new web series Her Story. The series is co-written by Jen who we first became familiar with on the reality series I Am Cait and Laura Zak from the tello series #Hashtag. This groundbreaking LGBT series will release its six-episode first season on their website and YouTube January 19th. The scripted new series follows Violet (Jen Richards) and Paige (Angelica Ross) as two transgender women in Los Angeles who have almost given up on love when suddenly chance encounters renew their hope for happiness. Violet is drawn to Allie (Laura Zak), a reporter who approaches her for an interview while career-driven Paige meets James (Christian Ochoa), the first man she considers opening up to in years. Like trans actress Laverne Cox who plays a transgender character in Orange Is The New Black all the transgender roles in Her Story are played by transgender actresses which keeps this series uniquely genuine. I talked to Jen about her inspiration for Her Story and her spin on our LGBT issues.
When asked what she would like to see happen for LGBT equality in the next few years Richards stated:
I think I'd like to see just more of everything. My particular focus lately has been representation in media and I'd like to see trans representation flourish. I'd like to see gender queer representation and non-binary representation. I'd like to see us as both heroes and villains. I'd like to see us as love partners. I'd like to see us as doctors and lawyers. I'd like to see us on screen where our trans identity wasn't the only reason we're part of the story; we're part of larger stories that include the full portrayal of our complicated lives and identities. Then beyond trans representation I think more than anything I would like to see a real reduction in violence against trans women of color that's been really horrifying to me and I've been working behind the scenes for many years. In some ways Her Story is a reaction to those kinds of events. I'd like to see everything from large corporations to local ma & pa shops start hiring trans people. I'd like to see trans people protected in schools, that they feel safe there and they can get an education. I'd like to see religious communities accept trans people as members of their flocks and help keep them protected as well.
Jen Richards received her BA in Philosophy from Shimer College, studied at Oxford University and in Kyoto, Japan. She has published articles, lectured and led workshops on a variety of topics across the country as well as being a consultant and advocate focusing on nonprofit management and gender and racial justice working with national organizations and media projects. Jen was also featured in Logo's Beautiful As I Want To Be, several episodes of AOL's True Trans with Laura Jane Grace and appears in videos for BuzzFeed and OWN. She was previously the Co-Founder and Director of The Trans 100 and creator of We Happy Trans a website dedicated to celebrating positive transgender experiences that has received national media attention. Her Story's Executive Producer is Eve Ensler, produced by Katherine Fisher/Speed of Joy Productions and directed by Sydney Freeland with cinematography by Bérénice Eveno. This groundbreaking web series features predominantly LGBTQ women, on and off-screen and premiers on January 19th.
For More Info: herstoryshow.com