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Watch: Lena Dunham and Grantland's Bill Simmons Talk 'Girls,' Nepotism, the Jezebel Photo Bounty and Why They Are So Few Female Showrunners

Photo of Alison Willmore By Alison Willmore | Indiewire February 20, 2014 at 3:39PM

Grantland's Bill Simmons has done an in-depth, hour-long interview with Lena Dunham in which he goes over a lot of hot topics with the "Girls" creator.
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Dunham

Grantland's Bill Simmons has done an in-depth, hour-long interview with Lena Dunham in which he goes over a lot of hot topics with the "Girls" creator, with a "SportsCenter" rundown on the right hand side. Among the subjects the two discuss are the fact that Dunham's current boyfriend Jack Antonoff (of the band Fun) dated Scarlett Johansson in high school and the accusations of nepotism the "Girls" cast members have faced ("Anyone who’s writing about this, I dare you to tell me one fact of my mom’s biography or to have ever looked at anything she’s done," Dunham challenged).

Dunham specifically wanted to talk about why there are so few female showrunners, and she said that while she feels that, like in many industries, "there's a bias toward men" in Hollywood, she also believes "that a lot of the traits that are instilled in women at a young age -- like positivity, equanimity, making people feel good all the time -- people are afraid that that is at odds with being a director or a showrunner or a person who’s in that position of authority. But the fact is, ["Girls" co-showrunner] Jenni [Konner] and I, and someone might argue with this, rule the ‘Girls’ set with love. We get no pleasure from laying down the law, it’s run from an emotional, connected place and it still happens. There’s room for all kinds -- there’s no one personality type that has the skill to manage the goings-on of a television show." She added that another problem is that "networks go, 'we already have our women's show.'"

In talking about the topic, the interview also touched on Jezebel's $10,000 bounty for the unretouched photos from Dunham's recent Vogue spread, ones that turned out to have been minimally altered. "That was messed up," Dunham said. "I think Jezebel can be really smart and funny, it’s just that once you’ve been attacked in that way, it’s hard to enjoy -- once you feel they’ve made such a monumental mistake in their approach to feminism. It was like I just can’t be half in. It felt gross." Of the writer of the posts, to whom Dunham said she hadn't spoken, she speculated that "I can’t imagine the reaction made her feel particularly great."

Check out the full interview below:


This article is related to: Television, TV Videos, Girls, Lena Dunham, HBO, Grantland







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