Unfortunately, there’s long been an unspoken expiration date on actresses in Hollywood. When they reach a certain age, women are historically no longer given as many roles and, when they are, they greatly differ from the ones they previously received. (Even Reese Witherspoon was told her career would drop off when she reached her 40s.) Actresses often discuss going from being leading ladies to being offered roles as someone’s mother or grandma. Now, Lady Gaga is the latest actress to speak out about ageism concerns in Hollywood.
The hit-making singer and A Star Is Born actress is 35 years old and currently being celebrated for her role as House of Gucci's Patrizia Reggiani, who famously married into the Gucci family and then hired a hitman to murder her husband, Maurizio. The movie speaks to the topic of women being disposed of when they are no longer deemed young and beautiful.
While speaking to Deadline, the songstress was asked if being a woman in her 30s working in the entertainment industry brings about some of the feelings Patrizia Reggiani dealt with in her life. In the actress’ words:
It’s a shame that women still are made to feel this way when male actors in the 40s, 50s, 60s, and heck, 80s can still find interesting and exciting movies to make if they please. Think about how many upcoming movies Liam Neeson could easily keep coming until he decides to retire. Gaga continued:
In addition to it being a problem for women in the movies, it’s also a prevalent bias that's prevalent in the music industry. How many times have you seen your favorite female artist have to “reinvent” themselves to become relevant whilst many male-fronted acts can remain basically the same. It’s good food for thought for us to remember as an audience and consumers.
The problem also comes down to a lot of Hollywood being run by male writers who may not be able to speak to the experience of middle-aged female characters when crafting a movie. Or they simply overlook casting them in their movie instead of your typical 20-30s leading lady. Thankfully, women within the industry are actively changing this, such as production company owner Reese Witherspoon, who has made it her mission to tell different stories about women and has found major success with movies like Wild, Gone Girl and TV series such as HBO’s Big Little Lies.
Even so, Lady Gaga’s feelings about ageism in the entertainment industry speak to a broader issue that still needs to be combated not only in Hollywood but within many sectors of society. Be sure to check out interview with Lady Gaga for House of Gucci here on CinemaBlend!
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