Variety’s Statler and Waldorf, aka Peter Bart and Michael Fleming, have an inane piece up for Variety called — r u ready? – Comic Con, Neutered Male Performances And Ballsy Directors Ben Affleck & Luc Besson which argues that it’s over for the men:
BART: Anyone out there notice the reverse sexism that’s afflicting Hollywood? I’m glad women are getting most of the juicy roles these days, but I’m surprised that the guys have all but shriveled and disappeared. And the phenomenon is being well documented. Michael Douglas last week argued that Hollywood’s leading men have lost their masculinity. A story in The Times of London claimed that the few flashy male roles in film were mostly going to Brits and Aussies — witness Tom Holland as Spider-Man. The leading men in Magic Mike XXL and Terminator: Genisys looked like they were sleepwalking (or sleep dancing). George Clooney in Tomorrowland was formidably forgettable. And Bradley Cooper did his best to build a character in Aloha, but the script did him in. The women are even dominating animated movies – can you remember any guys in Inside Out?
“getting most of the juicy roles these days”??? So more than one or two is most?
I’m in in the post Comic-Con sleep and brain deprivation mode but after our journalism panel on Thursday night—or five years ago, as it feels—Casey Gilly and Donna Dickens were trying to explain to someone a phenomenon that I can’t remember the name of. But basically when there are more than 30% women in a crowd scene men perceive it as being MOSTLY WOMEN. Obviously old timey wimpy Hollywood curmudgeons Bart and Fleming also think that a few movies having strong female roes makes up for years and years where, say, the Academy has to scramble to find five Sscar worthy main roles for women or why a woman doing anything in Hollywod is treated like a three-eyed fish. Anyway you can read more about all of this at the Geena Davis Institute for Gender Studies website. I’m going back to sleep. Wake me up when the women are running everything.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.