Taylor Swift casts trans model in 'Lavender Haze' music video: 'Thank you for being an ally'
We met her at midnight, and she didn't disappoint.
Taylor Swift released a music video for "Lavender Haze" on Friday, her latest off new album "Midnights" released in October. Swift wrote and directed the video, which included all things lavender – but more importantly, a groundbreaking co-star.
Swift cast transgender male model Laith Ashley as her romantic partner, something people were quick to point out as remarkable amid anti-trans sentiment and legislation burgeoning in the U.S.
"The love interest in Taylor Swift’s new Lavender Haze music video is trans model and artist Laith Ashley," wrote writer Ashley Spencer. "At a time when trans rights are increasingly under attack, this representation is major."
Another Twitter user added: "Having a major pop star like Taylor Swift feature a trans man as a life interest in a charting song is a huge deal."
The love interest in Taylor Swift’s new Lavender Haze music video is trans model and artist Laith Ashley. At a time when trans rights are increasingly under attack, this representation is major. pic.twitter.com/5n1F6aSGiP
— Ashley Spencer (@AshleyySpencer) January 27, 2023
Ashley thanked Swift on social media and didn't shy away from the importance of the moment. He wrote in an Instagram post: “Thank you @taylorswift for allowing me to play a small part in your story. You are brilliant and this is an experience I will never forget. It was truly magical. Your storytelling abilities through your music and visuals continues to leave me in awe, inspired, and hopeful. Thank you for being an ally. Representation matters. AND LOVE WILL ALWAYS WIN!"
Swift added that she "adored" working with Ashley in posts of her own.
The singer says in "Lavender Haze" she's "damned" if she gives "a damn what people say." It seems she wants to just stay in that lavender haze, indeed.
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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Taylor Swift casts Laith Ashley, trans model, in 'Lavender Haze' video