Fallon was reacting to a photo in which Schafer had dressed as a resident of the Capitol, the city in the Hunger Games, as a teen. Now, Schafer is living the dream by getting to play a resident of Capitol in the new film.
"For Halloween," Schafer said, "I was obsessed with how the Capitol people were in costume and made my own costume."
Fallon held up a promo shot of Schafer as Tigris Snow, saying "This is really cool! Now you're in Hunger Games! Congratulations, bud!"
Fans took issue with the use of the term "bud." So did Pink News.
A user who identified as trans on X said that it was "gross" of Fallon to call Schafer "bud."
Another trans-identified user on the platform said "as if i didn’t have reason enough to hate Fallon, he takes this opportunity to show that he doesn’t see Hunter as the beautiful, immaculate queen sitting before him to my cis readers, i hope you don’t see this as an overreaction—bud/buddy is unquestionably male-coded"
Fallon has also addressed women with terms that could more accurately be used to describe men. He called Ariana Grande "pal," and referred to Jennifer Lawrence as "dude" and "man."
Schafer transitioned after experiencing gender dysphoria as a young teenager. Since becoming an actor, Schafer has been outspoken about the need for representation so that more trans characters are seen in entertainment. Schafer said it was "magic" to see a trans person on screen.
"It’s magic when you haven’t seen someone like you on the screen your whole life, and then all of a sudden, there it is," Schafer said. Schafer played a trans character on the show Euphoria.
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