Daniela Vega, the Chilean transgender actress who has made Oscar history

The star of “A Fantastic Woman,” which won Best Foreign Language Film at last night’s Academy Awards, spoke to EL PAÍS in February ahead of the Goyas

The star of Oscar-nominated film Una Mujer Fantástica (A Fantastic Woman), Daniela Vega, made Academy Award history last night, when she became the frist transgender actress to take to the stage as a presenter at the ceremony. The Chilean introduced Sufjan Steven’s performance of “Mystery of Love,” which features on the soundtrack of Call Me by Your Name. “I want to invite you to open your hearts and your feelings to feel the reality,” she told the audience. “To feel love. Can you feel it?”

The triumphant moment could not have been further from how things were when, as a 14-year-old, her life split in two, and she began her transition from a man to a woman. Once in her new female body, Vega did not know what path to follow – acting or singing – nor whether the artistic world would accept her.

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