Grey’s Anatomy continues to keep the focus on transgender stories in Season 14. Candis Cayne will appear on the show as a transgender woman seeking gender reassignment surgery. The 46-year-old actress confirmed the news via Instagram on Wednesday, writing that she was very excited about the storyline.
Candis, who is a transgender woman, will play a transgender patient that comes to Grey-Sloan Memorial Hospital for groundbreaking vaginoplasty surgery.
According to TV Insider, Cayne’s character is inspired by a real-life transgender woman who helped Dr. Jess Ting, the director of surgery at the Center for Transgender Medicine and Surgery at Mount Sinai Hospital develop the vaginoplasty procedure.
Grey’s Anatomy co-showrunner, Krista Vernoff said that the storyline would display the complexity of vaginoplasty surgery. Before Cayne’s arc is over, people will see that transgender individuals do not get gender reassignment on a whim. It is a very long process, which Candis’ Grey’s Anatomy episodes will explain.
“(The surgery) revolutionizes the making of a vagina and we thought that was a really cool story, and Candis is playing a character inspired by something we read,” Vernoff explained.
Grey’s Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes brought Candis on the show to try to change how people see transgender people. She thinks they are misunderstood and hopes Cayne’s storyline will help them become more socially accepted.
The storyline comes just a few episodes after Dr. Casey Parker (Alex Blue Davis) told Dr. Bailey (Chandra Wilson) that he was a proud transgender man after he helped save the hospital from the hackers that took control of the hospital network. It showed that Dr. Parker was so much more than just a transgender man. In addition to being a trans man, he was also a smart and compassionate physician.
According to THR, Davis admitted that when he read the script for Candis, he cried. He added that he’s been waiting his whole life for the small screen to include transgender people in the television storylines and he’s thrilled that he will be part of the storyline, even if it’s just a small supporting role.
Candis is known for playing Carmelita Rainer on Dirty Sexy Money. She has also appeared on Nip/Tuck, Elementry, and Transparent. Some viewers will recognize her from the reality TV show, I Am Cait. Cayne is one of Caitlyn Jenner’s closest friends.
Grey’s Anatomy airs Thursday evenings on ABC at 8/7 p.m.