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Will Ferrell had ‘zero knowledge’ about the trans community. Then his best friend came out.

The documentary "Will & Harper," which will premiere at Sundance, centers on Ferrell's longtime friendship with Harper Steele, who came out as transgender in 2022.
Will Ferrell in London.
Will Ferrell in London in July. Lia Toby / Getty Images file
/ Source: Variety

Will Ferrell touched down at the Sundance Film Festival to world premiere the new documentary “Will & Harper,” which centers on the relationship between the beloved comedian and his best friend Harper Steele as they take a road trip. The two met during their days on “Saturday Night Live,” which Harper wrote for from 1995 to 2008. Harper came out as transgender in 2022.

“It was three summers ago in which Harper emailed a lot of her close friends with the headline: ‘Here’s a Weird One,’” Ferrell said at the Variety Studio presented by Audible. “She went on to explain she was going to transition and we were all of course excited to hear the news and surprised to hear the news. All of us were extremely supportive and expressed love…but that sort of opened the questions like, how can we help you? What do you need us to do?”

Ferrell said he had “zero knowledge” about the trans community before Harper came out to him.

“I had met trans people, but I didn’t have anyone personally in my life,” Ferrell said. “So this was all new territory for me, which is why I think this film is so exciting for us to kind of put out there in the world. It’s a chance all of us in the cis community to be able to ask questions and also just to listen and be there as a friend to discuss this journey.”

“It tells the story of a cis friend of a trans person who has to transition himself,” Harper added of the movie.

The official synopsis for “Will & Harper” reads: “When Will Ferrell finds out his close friend of 30 years is coming out as a trans woman, the two decide to embark on a cross-country road trip to process this new stage of their relationship in an intimate portrait of friendship, transition, and America.”

Ferrell also produced the documentary alongside Jessica Elbaum, Rafael Marmor and Christopher Leggett. The film is directed by Josh Greenbaum, who also produced.

“Will & Harper” is seeking distribution out of the Sundance Film Festival.