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The Wachowski sisters are auctioning off 'The Matrix' props to raise funds for trans youths

The Wachowski sisters are auctioning off 'The Matrix' props to raise funds for trans youths

All proceeds from the auction will go to the Protect & Defend Trans Youth Fund, which was introduced by Ariana Grande last month. 

Lana and Lilly Wachowski, the filmmakers behind some of the most iconic movies of our time, including "The Matrix" series and "Cloud Atlas," are auctioning off props and other memorabilia from their films in support of trans youth. It wasn't easy to part with some of the treasures, Lilly Wachowski said in a tweet, but the sisters "have been doing some spring cleaning," and decided to pass on "some pretty major and magical artifacts" to raise funds for organizations that serve trans people throughout the United States, a cause close to their hearts.



 

Fans of the Wachowskis have nearly 200 props and film ephemera including a lightning rifle prop from the original "The Matrix," a purple segway from "Speed Racer," the latex ears Channing Tatum wore in "Jupiter Ascending" and original production blueprints, slates and signed posters from several of their movies. The array of items up for grabs also features plenty of rare finds from their Netflix series "Sense8," original artwork, mock-ups of famous setpieces and some knick-knacks from the Wachowskis' desks, with bids beginning at $30 for some items. All proceeds from the auction will go to the Protect & Defend Trans Youth Fund, which was introduced by Ariana Grande last month. 



 

According to Vanity Fair, the Protect & Defend Trans Youth Fund will distribute money to 18 different organizations "advocating for the rights of trans youth in states currently targeted by anti-trans policies." Debuting the charity on April 1, Grande said she will match the dollar amount up to $1.5 million. "Right now, there are hundreds of bills pending in state legislatures across the United States that target trans youth and aim to curb their rights," Grande wrote on the fundraiser's page. "The impact of fighting these anti-trans bills and policies is felt all year by trans people, their families and loved ones."



 

The Wachowski sisters are both trans and came out publicly years after the first "The Matrix" film premiered in 1999. Earlier this year, Lilly Wachowski joined a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) that is fighting against House Bill 1570, which prevents doctors and medical officials from giving trans youth necessary medical treatment and referring them to gender-affirming care. In a brief shared by the ACLU, the 54-year-old said her "films at their core try to center love and connectivity" and that she is "proud to have lifted up" queer and transgender voices "in front of as well as behind the camera." 



 

"When I started living as my true self, I would sometimes catch short sharp glimpses of my reflection in windows and cars as I'd walk along or ride my bike," Wachowski stated. "It would make my heart skip a beat. The silhouette of my shadow on the ground cast by the afternoon sun was exhilarating and life-affirming. If no one else did, the Sun saw me as I am." In a 2020 interview, she confirmed that "The Matrix" series is an allegory for gender transition. Speaking 21 years after the first "The Matrix" movie hit our screens, Wachowski said that the story was "all about the desire for transformation" from the perspective of Neo—played by Keanu Reeves—and that she was "glad that it has gotten out that that was the original intention."



 

"The world wasn’t quite ready yet," Wachowski said during the interview. "The corporate world wasn't ready for it." Adding that she loves how "meaningful" the films are to transgender people, she said: "The way that they come up to me and say: these movies saved my life. I'm grateful that I can be throwing them a rope to help them along their journey."

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