Roland Emmerich’s Stonewall hits theaters on September 25, but Roadside Attractions has been teasing scenes all month: The latest featurette spotlights Jonny Beauchamp, who plays Ray (a.k.a. as Ramona), a hustler who befriends Indiana boy Danny (Jeremy Irvine) when he arrives in Greenwich Village without a plan or a clue.
Ray doesn’t identify as transgender (that term really didn’t exist in 1969) but he brazenly rejects gender stereotypes and gives as good as he gets to the forces of oppression.
He’s also something of a dreamer, though—imagining a place where he and Danny can make a conventional home together.
According to Beauchamp, Ray is a composite of real-life Stonewall veterans Ray Castro, one of the first people arrested during the 1969 riots, and Sylvia Rivera, a trans activist who was seminal to the movement for decades.
We’ve seen Stonewall, and while it feels like trans women and people of color are integral to the film, that’s a determination every viewer will have to make for themselves.
We can say with authority, however, that Johnny delivers an electrifying performance that gives the film much of its energy. Watch him discuss Stonewall—and the Stonewall riots—below.