Hollywood Feminist of the Day: Gemma Arterton

by Melissa Silverstein on September 20, 2010

in Actresses,Feminism

Who would have thought that a Bond girl would be the one speaking up for sexism in Hollywood, but Gemma Arterton who is now starring in Tamara Drewe (which will open in the states next month), has opened her mouth in a big and positive way.

She recently made mention of how poorly she has been treated on the set of films, that she has almost walked off big Hollywood movies.

Here’s what she said about the power holders of Hollywood:

the ‘t**ts out there (in the film world) who don’t deserve to be in the positions they’re in and treat people like s**t’.

And here’s what she said about the type of scripts she is offered:

I read so many scripts and they’re all the same. Either the character is just someone to be in the background or they’re there to help the man, to be the love interest, like I’ve done in Prince Of Persia or Clash Of The Titans.

What I want to do is find characters who are the focus, like Nicola Six; sexy and real women, not perfect, not pin-ups.

You go girl.  But let’s remember, Hollywood has never been kind to women and we know that women get more jobs when they are young. The prettier you are the more work you get, and aging…well we all know the rules (except if you are Helen Mirren and Meryl Streep.)

That women are treated like shit is not news.  That women are talking about it and hopefully not taking it, is.

Gemma Arterton says she is treated as a ‘piece of a**’ by Hollywood
Gemma Arterton and the perils of being a Hollywood bombshell
(The Telegraph)

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Chris September 20, 2010 at 10:46 AM

Just saw the trailer for the new Russell Crowe movie with Elizabeth Banks, and while it looked interesting, I just found myself rolling my eyes watching the trailer because it’s yet another movie where the main “hero” is the guy and some great actress is left basically being a prop in the story. Felt the same way about State of Play.

Scott Mendelson September 20, 2010 at 1:15 PM

Can’t argue with anything she said, but she is an acceptable of a troubling trend: glamorous actresses who take parts that victimize them in order to prove their worth as actresses. Lively Blake’s solid dramatic debut in Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants or her starring role in Gossip Girl doesn’t prove she’s a real actresses, so she has to play a drug-addicted, wasted junkie in The Town to prove that she can act. Ditto for Arterton: she isn’t taken seriously for Clash of the Titans or Prince of Persia (nevermind that she was lousy in both mediocre pictures), but she gets critical cudos for basically playing a starring role in a feature-length bondage fantasy (The Disappearance of Alice Creed). She spends an entire movie bound, gagged, and stipped naked, so NOW she’s a credible actress.

Chris September 21, 2010 at 10:35 AM

If they gained respect or credibility from those films I don’t think it had to do with them playing victims, but rather just being associated with what’s considered by most to be a good film. I was kind of disappointed in Alice Creed because the trailers made her character seem much more bad-ass than she actually turned out to be.

Katherine September 27, 2010 at 9:09 PM

Well, being a female actress, it is not that easy to just pick and choose your roles no matter how famous you are. If you want to work, if you want to eat, you pretty much take whatever there is as long as it doesn’t really go against your morals. Trust me, there isn’t much to take never mind turn down. There are way more actresses than actors and more speaking parts go to guys. It’s even worse for the pretty girls. Although there are more parts for those girls, they are mostly supporting roles and most of them are girlfriend or wife parts. For the actress who wants to be taken seriously, good luck.

Aitch October 21, 2010 at 10:52 PM

I agree with the last sentence–more actresses need to speak out about it–and hopefully start developing more projects themselves.

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