'Euphoria': Hunter Schafer on Having to Relive Her Transition Through Jules

hunter schafer transition
credit: Eddy Chen/HBO

Actress and model Hunter Schafer has always been open about — and proud of! — her identity as a transgender woman. But there were parts of her transition that she had long put behind her. That is, until she started filming Euphoria.

In her cover story for V magazine, Hunter discussed how difficult it was for her to transition as a teenager and how important it was for her not to stop and dwell on everything that was happening. She explained,

“Part of surviving [that] experience was just, like, getting through shit. Letting it rest, and not addressing it. I think that’s what I had been [doing] up to that point: just going and going, fighting to be on the other side of my transition.”

She continued,

“There was so much that I was working towards, and I was so excited to [be out of] North Carolina that I don’t think I’d ever looked back on [that experience].”

hunter schafer transition transgender
credit: Eddy Chen/HBO

But then Euphoria forced her to revisit the painful parts of her transition, as her character Jules went through the same thing herself as a young trans girl. This was particularly highlighted in season 1 and the “Special Episode Part 2: Jules.”

Hunter recalled when she first started filming the series and said,

“I was like, ‘Oh shit.’ And remembering things that I hadn’t thought about until [that point]. That happened throughout the entire season [one]: As we worked through different scenes, I’d have to remember a new detail, to dig up an artifact from within myself, and hold onto that moment for the scene.”

While it may have been difficult, she also said that reliving her transition turnout out to be quite therapeutic. She told magazine in 2019,

“It’s been therapeutic to readdress that part of my life, using Jules as a pathway.”

euphoria hunter schafer transition transgender
credit: Eddy Chen/HBO

Prior to filming the show, Hunter was a model in New York and actually had no intention to go into acting. She revealed,

“My original plan was to model in order to support my visual art. At that point, I thought, Damn, I wish I could be making money off of [my art] because it’s all I want to do. But then I got swept up in [acting], which is wild: I went to an arts high school, and was always focused on visual arts; [performing] was this exciting and tantalizing activity. Now it’s the opposite; I am monetizing performing. It’s wild!”

She didn’t even audition for the show until the Euphoria producers called her manager and specifically asked her to come in. Hunter obviously nailed the audition and the rest is history!

HBO has already renewed Euphoria for season 3. In February 2022, HBO Executive Vice President Francesca Orsi said,

“Sam, Zendaya, and the entire cast and crew of Euphoria have taken season 2 to extraordinary heights, challenging narrative convention and form, while maintaining its heart. We couldn’t be more honored to work with this gifted, wildly talented team or more excited to continue our journey with them into season 3.”

In the meantime, you can rewatch Euphoria seasons 1 and 2 on HBO Max.

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Lena Finkel
Lena Finkel is the Editor and Founder of Femestella. Prior to starting Femestella, she worked at People, InStyle, Tiger Beat, and Sesame Workshop (aka Sesame Street). She loves all things Real Housewives and The Challenge. When she's not busy binge-watching TV, you can find her taking an absurd amount of photos of her tuxedo cat Tom.