Dellal spoke with Refinery29 to explain why she chose the 17-year-old actress to play the role of a teenage girl transitioning into a boy. According to Dellal, it was actually Fanning’s femininity that first piqued her interest.
The director tells the website, “I could not have chosen a more blonde, more feminine actress who had a big a mountain to climb.” Gaby adds, “She’s just a girl who is being herself and is chasing the opportunity to start hormone treatment. So to actually use a trans boy was not an option because this isn’t what my story is about.”
As for Fanning, the tween starlet was spotted out and about in a decidedly girly summer outfit while book shopping out in Studio City, California on Monday.
About Ray is scheduled to premiere September 18, 2015.