Sara Ramirez on Joining And Just Like That as First Non-Binary Character

Premiered on December 9, And just like thatHBO’s hotly anticipated Sex and the city sequel to the series, revealing some new characters. Tony Award winner Sara Ramírez (last name/last name) plays Che Diaz, the show’s first non-binary character, who acts as a stand-up comedian and hosts a podcast where Carrie Bradshaw regularly appears. . Ramírez, 46, who is bisexual and appeared as non-bisexual last year, has been celebrated for portraying quirky characters on TV throughout their careers (including Tien Callie Torres, a hermaphrodite surgeon on Grey’s Anatomy, whom Ramírez performed for more than 10 seasons). Mexican-American actor who was honored by the New York LGBT Center with the New York Forerunner Award in 2017 and Human Rights Campaign Allied for Justice Award 2015 – talked about how much this moment means to them.

What is Che’s personality like?

Che is a smart, funny, dynamic stand-up comedian and host of their own podcast that Carrie Bradshaw stars in. What I really love about Che is that they themselves are not at fault. They’ve worked really hard to get to where they are, and they’re being presented as a three-dimensional, multi-faceted character. They are not here to represent an entire community. They are here to represent a fictional character. And they happen to be a huge fan of Carrie Bradshaw.

It was a thrill to be on the show this way. Back in the 90s when I first started in this industry, I watched Sex and the city as a fan, and dreamed of playing a cameo on it. And when the series ended, I thought, ‘Wow, the dream has come true.’ So you can imagine that when [showrunner] Michael Patrick King offered me the role during a meeting with Zoom last January, and I was so excited.

Was Che written as nonbinary before you got the role Or did your experience and identity inspire the character?

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I think when the role was written, there needed to be different types of plot, but there was also Michael Patrick King, who told me he wrote the part for me. Che is there to promote different kinds of storylines, and they’re also there to inspire certain characters to question their own inner oppression. I think they also inspire people around that life isn’t over after 40. There’s some space to rediscover who we are and that’s a big part of the show. I think the fact that there are women in their 50s and a non-binary character in their 40s makes [checking in with these lives] worth… often in the industry, we are conditioned to believe that after a certain age, certain genders and certain types of people are not worth seeing or seeing on screen. This program hopes to inspire people to think beyond.

I can imagine that the pressure and excitement of finding my place on an already established show and fanbase are probably two equal parts. How do you navigate into an established world and create your own space in it?

Michael Patrick King and Sarah Jessica Parker did a great job with the introduction of new characters on the show. They took great care not to tokenize anyone. They were caring and thoughtful around creating characters with fulfilling lives. They are not just there to represent an identity. They are there to represent a full life. And I really appreciate that thoughtfulness. We also enlisted support from GLAAD to ensure that what we put out was thoughtful and purposeful and suited the types of stories we wanted to be shown on television to the extent that is related to non-binary representation. I really appreciate all the ways that I feel supported. We have incredible writers in the writers room: one I’m a big fan of is Samantha Irby, one of our writers who also happens to be gay and black. I am truly grateful for Sam’s comments, contributions, and involvement in this particular reboot.

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The world was a little different when you played Dr. Callie Torres from 2006 to 2016.

Callie Torres wasn’t initially considered odd when I first agreed to play her. Until we got into season two, I suggested to Shonda Rhimes that we investigate her sexual orientation as bisexual, bisexual, gay. At the time, I didn’t openly talk about being bi, pan and queer; I definitely feel that context is another context from where we are today. I feel a lot more scared about how Hollywood will see me. Sometimes our community can be really terrible for bisexuals who are attracted to more than one gender. And so, in fact, I’m more concerned with how the LGBTQIA+ community will see me and how the LGBTQIA+ community in Hollywood will see me, because we have a lot of strong gays. powerful at the highest level, whether they are foreign or not.

I’m particularly nervous about going public but one way I know I can continue to deliver my work with representation is to open up this possibility to Callie Torres and so we’re involved with the help. GLAAD’s support and support, and it’s really affirming and it’s also a difficult and vulnerable process because when you do something for the first time on a show, diving in a foreign territory , sometimes you can touch things that can trigger people, and we’re all trying to be very purposeful and mindful about how we unfold Callie’s storyline. So I know and Shonda knows and everyone else in the writer’s room knows that we Not really going to perfection, we’re making progress. And I know that our community has been great at embracing that concept, even though our community may not always be good at practicing it.

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You were born in Mexico, studied at Juilliard, and worked in Los Angeles for several years. What does the environment of New York City mean to you?

New York City has played a huge role in my life and is playing a huge role in And just like thatlike it played a huge role in the original Sex and the city. It is a place that symbolizes possibilities and dreams come true. It’s a place that can lift you up and lower you quickly. It’s a living place and it does something for people, it’s an energy that affects people. It has its own complex history and beauty and there are many different forms of beauty, all shown at the same time here in New York City. And you know one What Che and I have in common is that we both love New York City very much. Che, however, loves New York City so much that they have the Empire State Building tattooed on their arm.

The edited interview is long and clear.

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“Back in the 90s, when I first started in this industry, I watched Sex and the city as a fan, and dreamed of doing a cameo,” said Sara Ramírez.
Courtesy of Paul Gregory

This story first appeared in the December 8 issue of The Hollywood Reporter. Click here to subscribe.

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