Looking at this cover, it’s striking to me that The Hollywood Reporter — out of six women — could only find one of color, and it’s one who has only been an actress for about an hour (albeit a superstar in music for much longer). This may be a portent of how white awards season once again might be, as THR is clearly trying to select from a combination of buzzy performances and big names, and that Venn diagram may not have a lot of overlap this year with non-white actresses. (We’ll soon see.)
Of all of them, I think it’s best of Emma and Jennifer — Emma’s blonde dye job isn’t as harsh here as when she appears with it on the red carpet, and Jen because her smoky eye makeup is perfectly executed. I would watch a LONG tutorial of precisely how to make that happen on my own face. Jessica Chastain actually also looks fairly nice. Allison Janney looks like she’s paying only 40 percent attention, and the other 60 percent of her is remembering an episode of Kimmy Schmidt that she particularly liked. Mary J. Blige PROBABLY looks physically great as a human, but they stuck her down in the bottom corner off to the side, and her face kind of says, “I know. This is some bullshit, a bit, right? WAIT UNTIL I WIN.” And Saoirse Ronan looks like they stretched out her neck by two extra inches.
On the story, there’s a cover photo of them all standing next to each other, in which you can see Saoirse’s bra, Emma’s shorts and striped cuffs, and Mary J’s leather shirt and pants (she looks like the kind of spy I want on my team). And the Q&A is good, despite one intro detail the writer clearly thinks is cute, about how they all took turns trying to imitate Saoirse Ronan’s Irish accent (I am sure Ronan didn’t care, but sometimes it bugs me when people act like they’ve never heard an accent before). As you might expect, it dives straight into the harassment and Harvey of it all:
CHASTAIN: But do you know what [Aaron Sorkin] said to me the other day when we were talking about what’s going on in the industry? He said that he was talking to his daughter, Roxy, and saying, “Listen, when you go into the workforce, if a guy grabs you or does something with you, you can scream, you can fight back.” And she turned to him and said, “Dad, why are you teaching me to defend myself and not teaching those guys not to be creeps?”
Roxy Sorkin, you are going to be JUST FINE in life. I love your moxie, Roxy.
I’m going to give Jessica Chastain the other pull quote, also, because this is an extremely interesting piece. It’s long, but it’s worth it, especially for the reaction at the end.
CHASTAIN: A lot of the problem in terms of wage equality, but also in terms of [female] writers and directors coming on to projects, starts at the agency level. I now have a production company, and I’m asking [my agents], “Can you guys send me a list of writers?” And it’s all men. I’m realizing that they’re going to submit the writers that have the higher quote because they get a percentage of the quote. So that’s leading us to why there’s not so many female filmmakers, right? But [with actors], I don’t understand — if you’re a very successful agency and they know what everyone is making on the film — how an agent is OK with you making a third of your co-star’s salary. After Zero Dark Thirty, I was sent a lot of scripts where it was a female protagonist, and they wouldn’t do my deal until they knew who the male actor was because they needed to do his deal first and then see what was left over.
CHASTAIN: Yeah. And I decided I’m not doing that anymore. So from now on, if someone has something they’re bringing to me, great, let’s do my deal [now]. But also, if someone is showing up for three weeks of a two-month film, they’re not getting paid more than me.
I am cheering. Stand tall, ladies.