In an interview with Australian Women’s Weekly, Russell Crowe made some “explosive” comments about actresses and their not so age-appropriate roles in movies. The actor’s remarks were first released online over 2 weeks ago, but emerged again this Monday after the actor from New Zealand faced accusations of sexism.
Crowe, who is now promoting his first movie as a director, “The Water Diviner”, spoke about playing a father of 3 grown sons in the film. When the 50-year-old star said he couldn’t have played the role 20 years ago, he also related this to roles actresses play on the big screen:
“The best thing about the industry I’m in – movies – is that there are roles for people in all different stages of life. To be honest, I think you’ll find that the woman who is saying that the roles have dried up is the woman who at 40, 45, 48, still wants to play the ingénue, and can’t understand why she’s not being cast as the 21-year-old.
Meryl Streep will give you 10,000 examples and arguments as to why that’s bullshit, so will Helen Mirren, or whoever it happens to be. If you are willing to live in your own skin, you can work as an actor. If you are trying to pretend that you’re still the young buck when you’re my age, it just doesn’t work.
I have heard of an actress, part of her fee negotiation was getting the number of children she was supposed to have lessened. Can you believe this? This character was a woman with 4 children, and there were reasons why she had to have 4 children – mainly, she lived in a cold climate and there was nothing to do but fornicate all day – so quit arguing, just play the role!
The point is, you do have to be prepared to accept that there are stages in life. So I can”t be the “Gladiator” forever.”
A series of caustic headlines popped up afterwards in response to Crowe’s remarks. Slate Magazine, for instance, wrote “Russell Crowe Says Older Women Don’t Get Movie Roles Because They Refuse to Act Their Age“, while Jezebel’s reaction was more inflammatory “Always Full of Shit Russell Crowe Says Actresses Should Act Their Age“.
In addition, Jessica Chastain, a Golden Globe Award winner who had also received two Oscar nominations lashed back at Crowe’s statement saying “I think he’e getting his foot stuck in his mouth.”
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