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Russell Crowe Says Actress Complaints About Ageism Are ‘Bullsh*t,’ And Meryl Streep Agrees

Russell Crowe Says Actress Complaints About Ageism Are 'Bullsh*t,' And Meryl Streep Agrees

One of the ongoing conversations the industry has been having over the past few years revolves around increasing the role of women in all levels of production. Calls have been made for more women to be given executive roles or be considered for directing blockbuster projects, while actresses have often voiced concerns about the dearth of quality roles, particularly when compared to men, when they begin to reach middle age. But don’t tell that to Russell Crowe. In a recent interview with The Australian Woman’s Weekly, he dismisses ageism concerns by putting forth the opinion that actresses just aren’t, well, acting their age.

“The best thing about the industry I’m in—movies—is that there are roles for people in all different stages of life,” Crowe said. “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.”
And what does Streep have to say about this? “I agree with him. It’s good to live in the place where you are,” the legendary actress told The Telegraph.

But dismissing the concerns of middle-aged and older actresses as not facing up to the realities of their age is completely dismissive. While Streep and Mirren (and let’s toss Judi Dench in there) get the pick of the crop when it comes age-appropriate roles, those parts are few, and there aren’t many other actresses of that age that will get a movie green lit. In general, men have it much easier when it comes to the number of quality, complex, and interesting roles as they head into the silver-haired years.

Thoughts? Share ’em below and let us know if the ageism train is powered by unrealistic expectations or if Hollywood has a problem.

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