Meryl Streep celebrated her 72nd birthday this week, but it was Sharon Stone a lot of people were talking about on social media. An interview from Everything Zoomer published in late May 2021 went viral for featuring Stone’s frank thoughts on Streep. While Stone called Streep an “amazingly wonderful woman and actress,” she warned against the industry’s idolization of the three-time Oscar winner. It all started when the interviewer mentioned that Stone “finally” got to work with Streep in Steven Soderbergh’s “The Laundromat.”
“I like the way you phrase that, that I finally got to work with Meryl Streep,” Stone said. “You didn’t say, ‘Meryl finally got to work with Sharon Stone.’ Or we finally got to work together…Because that’s the way her life went, she got built up to be, ‘Everyone wants to work with Meryl.’ I wonder if she likes that?”
Stone continued, “The way you structured the question is very much the answer to the question. The business was set up that we should all envy and admire Meryl because only Meryl got to be the good one. And everyone should compete against Meryl. I think Meryl is an amazingly wonderful woman and actress. But in my opinion, quite frankly, there are other actresses equally as talented as Meryl Streep. The whole Meryl Streep iconography is part of what Hollywood does to women.”
“Viola Davis is every bit the actress Meryl Streep is. Emma Thompson. Judy Davis. Olivia Colman. Kate Winslet, for fuck’s sake. But you say Meryl and everybody falls on the floor,” Stone added. “I’m a much better villain than Meryl, and I’m sure she’d say so. Meryl was not gonna be good in ‘Basic Instinct’ or in ‘Casino.’ I would be better. And I know it. And she knows it.
The Everything Zoomer story adds: “‘But we’re all set up to think that only Meryl …’ – here Stone’s voice goes all breathy, and she stretches out her arms in an arabesque, left arm forward – ‘is so amazing …’ – right arm forward – ‘that when you say her name …’ – left arm forward – ‘it must have been amazing …’ – right arm – ‘for me to work …’ – left arm – ‘with her.'”
“We’re all labeled the Queen of Something,” Stone said. “I’m the Queen of Smut! She’s the Queen of That! We all have to sit in our assigned seats. Are you kidding me? If we worked in a supermarket, she can’t always be the No. 1 checkout girl. We’re all doing our jobs. Everybody gets to get better, and everybody gets to sometimes have that not great a day. Even Meryl, we’ve been taught that everybody doesn’t get a seat at the table. Once one is chosen, nobody else can get in there.”
Stone again brought up Streep when the interviewer turned to the #MeToo movement. The “Casino” Oscar nominee said, “Harassment is everywhere. Until there are real laws, #MeToo was just the opening sentence. I’m sure Meryl has a story. But I’m also sure if Meryl told you her story, she wouldn’t be being Meryl, and she wouldn’t be getting those jobs. Meryl can’t be the envelope pusher. Because then she wouldn’t get the jobs. Meryl’s a smoother. That’s what she does.”
Head over to Everything Zoomer’s website to read Stone’s interview in its entirety.