Elliot Page Says He's Joined His First Dating App Thanks to One of His 'Umbrella Academy' Co-Stars
By Miguel A. Melendez
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Elliot Page is getting back out there, and he's getting a little help from The Umbrella Academy's Ritu Arya. The 35-year-old actor took to his Instagram Story and shared a photo of himself on a bed next to Arya looking at what's presumably Page's cell phone. He captioned the Story, saying, "@rituarya guiding me on my first dating app ever.”
Page signing up for the dating app comes some 18 months after he filed for divorce from Emma Portner after three years of marriage. A month prior to that, Portner publicly shared her support for Page, after he came out as transgender. "I am so proud of @elliotpage," Portner wrote on Instagram alongside a screenshot of Page's statement. "Trans, queer and non-binary people are a gift to this world."
"I also ask for patience and privacy but that you join me in the fervent support of trans life every single day," she added. "Elliot’s existence is a gift in and of itself. Shine on sweet E. Love you so much."
The Umbrella Academy creator and showrunner Steve Blackman recently shared exclusively with ET how he crafted Page's character's transition on the show. For starters, Blackman said writing Viktor's transition wasn't made at the request of Page. He said the decision was based on what felt creatively and narratively right.
"I had already finished the season, the writers were gone, scripts were finished and I got a call from Elliot one day saying, 'I'm transitioning.' I was very happy for him," Blackman told ET. "To his credit, he didn't demand that I write it into the story. He said, 'Do what you want. I trust you. Write it in, don't write it in, whatever you want to do.' Elliot is very kind like that."
"Ultimately, I decided to write it in, but to be honest, I did not know a lot about what it is to be transgender and I didn't know how to tell that story," he acknowledged. Blackman reached out to Nick Adams, GLAAD Media Institute Vice President and advocate for transgender rights, and transgender author/journalist Thomas Page McBee for guidance. "[Thomas has] been through the experience and he became my guide," Blackman credited. "In collaboration with Elliot, they talked me through what it means to be trans, what it means, how it feels and how to tell a story."
When he got the script to the new scenes for the second episode of season 3, Page said Blackman nailed it.
"I just sent the pages to Elliot and I said, 'What do you think?' And he said, 'They're beautiful.' They had a few thoughts and that was it," Blackman added. "He was so kind to me, he didn't make any demands on it. He just said, 'Craft the story you want to tell,' and that was really wonderful. You can't get better as the showrunner, as a writer, from someone like that."