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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

this is Hollywood’s sexism, right here

Sucker-Punch-movie-image

(above, a still from a lingerie ad. no, wait: it’s a from a female-led action movie)

This is the bullshit. From Heat Vision:

‘Sucker Punch’ May Be Why There Aren’t More Female-Led Action Movies

The Planet Ethereia blog reports that Tara Cardinal attempted to get Legendary Pictures — producers of Pacific Rim, Man of Steel and Clash of the Titans, amongst other projects — interested in her fantasy project Legend of the Red Reaper. The studio turned her down, for a number of reasons. One of which, in particular, seems a little of place with the others.

The email from the (unnamed) Legendary representative was published on the site, unedited. “Thank you for letting me take a look at your script this weekend,” it began. “…while I am personally drawn to the presence of a female action hero, it is currently a tough sell with the less than stellar way SUCKER PUNCH was received…”

In related news, Legendary has also started turning down any project related to male action heroes after the less-than-stellar reception to Jack the Giant Slayer, Jonah Hex and Ninja Assassin, as well as giant monster characters after Pacific Rim. Oh, wait. Never mind.

The failure of male-led action movies is NEVER a reason to stop making male-led action movies. Never ever ever.

This is the bullshit. This is Hollywood’s sexism.


  • RogerBW

    I certainly won’t argue with your thesis, but I think the sexism is probably unconscious. To someone immersed in the Hollywood culture, “an action film with women” really is just as far outside the normal, standard, acceptable box as “an action film with mythological monsters” or “an action film with cowboys”.

    The more I learn about the way these people think, the more surprised I am that anything outside the utterly generic ever gets made.

  • singlestick

    I really doubt that the sexism is unconscious. There is too much active rationalizing about why action movies with women “can’t” be done. Another film site noted that four of the biggest flops in box office history were in theaters very recently:

    http://www.slashfilm.com/four-of-the-fifty-biggest-box-office-bombs-are-in-theaters-right-now/

    “… the year’s biggest losers, in order are, The Lone Ranger, R.I.P.D., Jack the Giant Slayer, White House Down, and Turbo.”

    And yet, Hollywood is getting ready to serve up more of the same. Does anybody really want to see another “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs?”

  • RogerBW

    Yeah, but let’s adjust for inflation before saying they’re the biggest bombs ever. :-)

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