In the upcoming November issue of ‘Elle,’ their annual Women in Hollywood edition focuses on four very different actresses’ experiences working in the film industry: Reese Witherspoon, Penelope Cruz, Melissa McCarthy, and Shailene Woodley.
In Elle‘s ‘Women in Hollywood’ issue we get to hear from four amazing actresses and their views on being a woman in the film industry. Reese Witherspoon particularly opened up about her experience now that she’s also producing movies. “I started noticing a couple years ago that I wasn’t seeing women as the stars of movies. I’m seeing them as the guys’ girlfriends, or so-and-so’s wife. I just thought: God, if I don’t start buckling down and start producing some movies, what’s my daughter going to see in the movies?” The Oscar winning actress has produced both Legally Blonde and Legally Blonde: Red White and Blonde (2009 and 2003 respectively), and the indie flick Penelope, (2006). She plans on producing two upcoming films set to release for a 2014 release, including Gone Girl and Wild.
Reese Witherspoon’s ‘Women In Hollywood’ Cover:
When asked about being a mom in Hollywood Reese said: “Somebody was saying to me the other day, ‘Oh, people get less interesting when they have kids.’ I just don’t think that’s true. I feel like I was so confused before I had kids, I almost got in my own way. Having kids made me clearer about who I was as a woman. I just wanted to exhibit good qualities for my daughter. I was a little competitive before I had kids- probably really competitive, to be honest. It really made me let go of that.” We love that being a mom has made her even better at her job!
Melissa McCarthy On Being A Modern Comedienne:
The star of The Heat opened up about her thoughts on being a female in comedy. “A lot of times, women have had all their tools taken away (in Hollywood comedies). It’s like you’re never inappropriate, you have the greatest job, you look great, your hair is amazing, and now go be funny. And it’s like, with what? You have to fall down for us to want to watch you get back up. And it’s like they never let you watch women fall down.” Ironic since her last Saturday Night Live appearance began with her stumbling on a pair of very high heels, but never outright falling over.
So, who is Melissa McCarthy‘s favorite comedienne to watch? “I watch Julia Louis-Dreyfus on Veep and she is so good, because she is playing the world’s biggest asshole narcissist, and yet you can’t take your eyes off of her. In fact, you still strangely like her and almost want to hang with her.” We agree with you Melissa, Julia Louis-Dreyfus is hilarious!
Penelope Cruz On Working In Hollywood:
When asked about the best advice she had gotten about her work, the mom of two said: “How important it is to learn to say no. You’re going to have to put a lot of your time into a project, and you have to know if it’s something you really feel connected with, because it’s not a job you can do like you press a button- no.”
Penelope also opened up about her opinions on her celebrity status. “The concept of a ‘star’ will always sound foreign and surreal to me because growing up in my country, you’re an actor, not a star.”
Shailene Woodley On Hollywood’s Younger Generation:
The actress of The Spectacular Now is eager to experience something new. “I’m so young, and I’m single, and I just want to drift. I’m just going to be a drifter. I want to do something totally different before Insurgent [the second film in the Divergent trilogy]. Maybe I’ll work in a tea shop. Or live in Amsterdam. Or be a nanny. Life experience only helps us as actors. I need new experiences to draw upon.”
As Shailene figures out these new experiences, she makes a point to stay true to herself. “There’s nothing like walking into a meeting and people expecting me to shake hands, and you hug them. For me, a hug is to disregard all of that bullshit and be like, This is me, Shai. This is who I am. Now let’s talk about real situations. Let’s not talk about all this surface-level stuff.”
We hope the rest of women in Hollywood have the same hunger for change as these four actresses do. What do you think? What are you looking to see females do in Hollywood in upcoming projects?
— Katie George