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These 5 Horror Films Offer Bloody Good Trans Representation

A figure is pressed up against a frosted window as if they ran into it. Their hands grasp at the window. In the foreground is a decrepit wooden room.

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez

Horror has come a long way regarding trans and nonbinary representation. In the past, trans portrayals in horror films have even been downright offensive. A classic example is Sleepaway Camp (1983) and its deeply problematic trans “reveal” at the end. Depicting trans and nonbinary folks’ identities as the reason they are villains, rather than allowing people to simply be horrible humans just because they are doesn’t count as the inclusive representationon trans folks deserve.  

Below, you’ll find 5 films that explore inclusive trans representation in horror and feature trans and nonbinary actors. 


A sketched collage of beautiful women's heads are on a dark blue background. Red splotches are over part of the collage. The film title at the bottom of the poster reads, "Bit."

Poster from IMDB


Bit (2019)

Vampires are incredibly queer, and Bit happily relishes in that fact. The film follows a transgender teen named Laurel (Nicole Maines) who goes to LA for the summer, only for her vacation to become chaotic when she meets a queer vampire crew.  It’s not a perfect film, but for a film to have a transgender woman playing a transgender character is a welcome change. The film has an endearing aesthetic and features and outright queerness throughout. It’s a fun watch if you’re interested in watching a queer vampire gang take out horrible people.  


A black, shadowy profile of a head is against a red background. Protruding from the head are shadows from hundreds of little pins.

Poster from IMDB



Hellraiser (2022)

If you’ve seen Hellraiser (1987), then you likely already know the queer legacy the film has. Clive Barker’s delightfully grotesque universe is one to behold. After countless sequels that are considered pretty touch and go, Hellraiser finally received a reboot.  

Hellraiser (2022) follows a woman struggling with addiction when she happens upon an otherworldly puzzle box. From there, our main character, her brother, and her friends endure a nightmare involving humanoid creatures that delight in giving pleasure and pain. It’s worth noting that the film features several openly queer actors.  Jamie Clayton stars as Pinhead (or The Priest, as the film calls her). Choosing to have Pinhead portrayed by a trans actor is truly iconic. Not to mention, Clayton’s performance is one of the best parts of the film.  


A woman was a scary face and rotting hands holds three children close to her chest. We cannot see the children's faces, just the woman's arms on the back of their heads.

Poster from IMDB


Evil Dead Rise (2023)

The Evil Dead franchise coming back to life was a pleasant surprise for many. Naturally, fans were split down the middle about the new film, but that’s par for the course with almost any horror franchise.  

Evil Dead Rise follows a family as they come across the Naturom Demonto and accidentally summon evil forces that possess people and cause mayhem. It’s a very bloody and gory entry (on a different level than the 2013 Evil Dead) that happens to have a transgender actor playing one of the kids. Morgan Davies delivers a good performance as Danny, and there’s no discussion of his gender identity. It’s quite refreshing when someone’s identity is a non-issue for their loved ones. Instead, the focus in this film is on how Danny’s silly curiosity literally brings about death and chaos.  


An animated young Black girl is walking cavalierly through a graveyard with a stereo on her shoulder. She's wearing punk clothes. The center of the speaker is an eyeball. In the purple background, two scary men look on next to a full moon.

Poster from Wendell & Wild


Wendell & Wild (2022)

Animated series can deliver just as much representation as live action. Wendell & Wild is a stunning example of that. The film follows a punk teen named Kat (Lyric Ross) who gets tangled up with a pair of demons who falsely promise to bring back her deceased parents.  

For an animated film to have a Black punk girl as the lead is spectacular. But for her sidekick to be a trans boy of color—voiced by Sam Zelaya, an openly trans actor of color—is groundbreaking. Allowing marginalized people to tell their own stories should be more commonplace—even if that story is told via a voice acting role in a stop-motion horror comedy.  


A woman's terrified face peeks out from the silhouette of a man in a creepy mask. Behind him black lines splay out on a red background.

Poster from IMDB


Bad Girl Boogey (2023)

There’s something magical about horror films made with a smaller budget, especially when the individuals behind the film are openly queer or trans. Bad Girl Boogey follows a group of LGBTQ+  teens who must fight to stay alive while a killer wearing an evil mask seeks to murder them. Alice Maio Mackay is an openly trans filmmaker that has a reputation for bringing queer stories to life. With Bad Girl Boogey, she delivers a slasher delight full of LGBTQ+ characters. There are also some openly queer folks in the cast. It’s worth checking out, as supporting queer indie media is always important.  



For a genre as beloved by the LGBTQ+ community as horror, it can be frustrating that it’s taken so long to get quality trans representation. However, the films above prove that there is space for all gender identities in campy slashers, gory adventures, and animated tales of terror. As queer horror fans, we should keep calling for more visible trans representation in horror, because somebody is clearly listening.  




Writer Vanessa Maki
Vanessa Maki
Vanessa Maki (she/her) is a writer, artist, and self-proclaimed Blerd. Her work often covers horror and other nerd content from a multi-marginalized perspective. You can find her articles on Pink Advocate, The Mary Sue, Dread Central and more. Follow her on Instagram or Twitter @theblackbuffy.