Back to IndieWire

Win a Copy of Feminist Ryan Gosling

Win a Copy of Feminist Ryan Gosling

I love Feminist Ryan Gosling.  Gender studies student Danielle Henderson is so frickin smart taking a dude we all think of as sensitive with feminist tendencies and throwing some great feminist quotes onto his pictures creating a whole new meme.  It was so smart that this woman got herself a book deal and now The Feminist Ryan Gosling book is out and the good news is that Women and Hollywood has two copies to give away.

Here’s a quote from Henderson how Hollywood thinks of women:

Hollywood has no idea what to do with women. It doesn’t understand how to market to women, how to build multi-dimensional female characters, or how to mentor and hire female producers, best boys, grips or camera persons. At the root of this problem seems to be an inherent laziness, an unwillingness to branch out from familiar methods, but the ultimate problem is that Hollywood is only held accountable to itself.

No one is policing studios to hire more women, more people of color, to develop projects and take risks with new writers; when the topic is raised, studios seem to address their ever-present blind spot by putting all of the diversity missing from 800 movies into one movie in an effort to get you to shut up – ‘Look, we have a female writer/producer/director/cast in this one, and one of them is African American, be happy! We’ve solved that pesky diversity problem for you, and maybe we’ll make another one of these movies in five years.’

Even more terrible is that women have caught on to how Hollywood works, and are now perpetrating some of these one-dimensional offenses themselves in an effort to work in the industry, writing female characters as neurotic, relationship challenged messes or pornstar-type everywomen. I decided last year after a particularly abysmal film that I was no longer going to see any movies that painted women in such a myopic light. It means I miss out on a lot of movies, but it also means that I don’t have to shell out money to be offended. People forget to vote with their dollars; no one wants to think that going to the movies is a political act.

In order to win your copy of the book you need to write in the comment who is your favorite Hollywood feminist (male or female) and why.  You also MUST put your real email address in (it will not be published) so that I can contact you.  The contest will end at 5pm EST on August 22nd.

‘Feminist Ryan Gosling’ Author Danielle Henderson on Her New Book (The Daily Beast)

This Article is related to: Features



All my life I have loved films. I have dreamed of becoming a part of making them. So I aspired to be an actress. When aspiring to make movies, it was expected that I would take that route. I mean, I was a girl and I was pretty, it was only natural. However acting, I discovered, did not suit my personality and I went on to pursue other things.

But then I saw The Virgin Suicides, Lost in Translation and Somewhere…I saw these films that were told with such a sensitive, warm, feminine voice. I just fell in love with the idea of being a writer and director of films. Suddenly, I saw this tiny window of hope that I one day, I could be making movies by expressing myself openly and honestly using my feminine traits as strengths, setting and example for other woman and help given us a common voice. Because, and I quote Judi Lee Miller, being a woman in power shouldn’t mean you distance yourself from your womanhood. My favorite Hollywood feminist is Sofia Coppola for she is a powerful woman in a man’s world, not playing by the rules not afraid of real emotions, and not afraid of pink.

I am currently making my first short about the silence before the storm of an 11-year old girl’s puberty, check out it out at or


Meryl Streep. She is all woman. She is feminine. She is a role model playing strong women on screen. At every age and stage in her career, in every genre and role in her films she seems totally happy in her skin. The current conflict and confusion about the role of women in 21st century films as reported in recent press is perhaps the word "feminist" as opposed to "feminine". Some men may feel threatened by the word and by talented female screenwriters/producers/directors and actresses so they stick together and limit the entry/success of women in the industry. Men and women in some instances are afraid of celebrating the "feminine". As a result the true inner beauty of women in many roles and careers is hidden behind a masculine or neutral mask and the natural power of the "feminine" has been lost. I would say to all women in the film industry: Be true to yourself and be strong in your female self.


Susan Sarandon is my favourite feminist, actor and activist. She is open, forthright, owns her sexuality and her identity and combines her anger and warm sense of humour to effectively inspire women and men to confront bigoted preconceptions and actions. And in her work she inherently dismantles the Hollywood default of woman as prize, decoration or millstone by making every role, however flat on paper, into a person who you know has a life, thoughts, and a past.

Jordan V

My favorite feminist is Angelina Jolie. It is not because of her face being present on every check out stand or her (in)famous leg pose at the oscars, or her to be marriage, it is because of the life she leads, not the one that tabloids sell. She is a Bond, not a Bond girl. I applaud that and her life she leads with out gimmicky publicity stunts. We remember the greats like Hepburn and Monroe, I honestly believe that people will remember Angelina Jolie. Yes, she has acted in some mere blockbuster movies like Salt and Wanted but roles such Girl Interrupter, Changeling, and A Mighty Heart are memorable and emotionally true. There are many great feminists and I am proud to say the number grows but Angelina Jolie is hollywood standard and a great feminist. A UN ambassador, acclaimed Oscar winning actress, and a mother. I vote Jolie. I'm not used to commenting on these things and I am rambling so.. I'd like to end with a Clint Eastwood quote about Angelina regarding her ability:
I've always admired her talent. She's somewhat hampered sometimes by having this gorgeous face, the most gorgeous face on the planet.
'She's on covers and all that stuff. But she is a great talent, and it would be easy to overlook that, except after seeing this you realise that she is this great, talented person.'


I'll go with Agnes Varda. Not only did she break ground for women, but her study of women (and their interactions with each other and men) is still informative, fascinating, and timeless yet modern.


I'd have to go with Sigourney Weaver. She plays such great roles and recently spoke about how she doesn't play "damsels in distress" because the women she knows are strong and resourceful. I also love how when she visited the White House she had to be physically removed for trying to talk to Pres. Reagan about women's reproductive freedom.

Suzanne Lively

Rosario Dawson because she speaks openly about being a feminist and what it means to her, even if it affects her career in a 'seemingly' negative role by not getting a particular role. She is also an activist who voices her opinions on a range of topics, such as women issues and politics.


I think my favorite Hollywood feminist is Ashley Judd. Part of the appeal, for me, is that she's someone that is so pretty that people might just expect her to bat her eyelashes and skip off into the sunset, but she doesn't. At all. She's crazy smart and principled and full of action. I love, love, love that she speaks out against human trafficking, and the culture that allows it to happen. She's just kind of a badass.


Hollywood has never been a destination or aspiration for feminists. I find myself generally looking elsewhere for inspiring feminists due to the inability of the film industry to embrace women of the world on any meaningful level other than superficial. I do, however take my hat off to Brenda Chapman for the groundbreaking story of a believable and positively inspiring story of mother-daughter relationship in Brave. Geena Davis for her contributions to a positive portrayal of women in media and Eve Ensler (NY) for feminist activism to end the daily violence towards women and girls across the globe. Just read her awesome awards list.


Madonna because she embodies everything feminine, she's opinionated and unapologetic, and she could care less what people think about her.


Geena Davis — she's a feminist activist (as evidenced by her leadership of The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media), and she's played some of my favorite feminist characters, from Thelma in Thelma & Louise to Veronica in The Fly.


Hi, my favorite Hollywood feminist is Nora Ephron, cause nothing stopped her to reach all her goals and manifest her interest with real passion in what they call "a man's world". For no reason she stopped being funny or raw about the real truth of being a woman.


Julia Stiles. I think because of the lack of proud feminists in Hollywood, we tend to assign that label to people who are feminist-y. Which is unfortunate, but perhaps a good way to start dialogue. (which is why Feminist Ryan Gosling was so great) So, I vote for the OF, original feminist, Julia Stiles. Not only do her filmography attest to her conscientious decision to portray the multiplicity and complexity of "womanhood," but she is a committed advocate of feminism in Hollywood. Besides, it doesn't hurt that she was in one of the most quotable canonic feminist films of all time: 10 things I hate about you


It's got to be Brad Pitt, surely?


My favorite Hollywood feminist…that's a tough one! For now I'll say Joss Whedon because 1) I'm a fangirl and 2) the sheer number of extraordinary female characters he's put on screens big and small. Now…if Joss were to cast Ryan Gosling in a movie…

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *