George Clooney Says ‘The Help’ Proves Women Can Carry a Film

george clooney viola davisLike we need another reason to love George Clooney -- he's already my boyfriend one of my favorite Hollywood players. But now he has to go off spouting feminist sweet nothings in our ears about women being able to bring in major box office beans -- swoon! Tells us more, George! No really, go on.

In the current issue of Entertainment Weekly, George poses with longtime pal (and star from The Help) Viola Davis, and they dish about women and Hollywood. Plenty of people were amazed this year when Bridesmaids grossed $288 million and The Help brought in $203 million worldwide -- but Clooney just thinks Hollywood needs to learn to take women more seriously.

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Here's how George put it:

There's this strange thing that's happened over the last 25 or 30 years where there's this decision being made that women aren't able to carry the box office. Now, Bridesmaids has proved that to be bullsh*t, and The Help has proven it to be bullsh*t. But it's much harder to get a film with a woman lead made. When a man hits 40 is when roles just begin to happen. And for women it doesn't happen. I find that to be a very concerning issue.

Yes, thank you, George. Bridesmaids and The Help both turned around those myths that female-lead movies can't bring in serious lettuce. Of course, he's kind of stating the obvious. Roles dry up for women once they turn 40? Studios don't think guys will see movies with female leads? O RLLY? But I appreciate hearing this acknowledged by a man who carries a lot of clout in Hollywood.

Now -- how "concerning" does George find this issue? Because I would love it if he found it concerning enough to do something about it. As in, use his own male, over-40, Hollywood superstar power to get his pal Viola Davis some more roles worthy of her talent. (Actually, how do I know he's not already doing that?)

In the same article, Viola says there just aren't enough good roles for African-American women -- which brings up not only Hollywood's hang-ups over women, but also race. Did anyone else feel like a glass ceiling for Latina actresses was broken with Zoe Saldana starred in the action thriller, Colombiana? Then again, Zoe is still under 40.

Anyway, I started off wanting to write a nice, gushy post about how much I love George Clooney for standing up for women in film. And now here I am, demanding more! But who knows, maybe George's words will have some influence. Maybe saying it enough times will lead to some change -- because I think a lot of us would like to see far more women-led movies like The Help and Bridesmaids in 2012.

Do you think George Clooney has enough influence to help change the kinds of movies that get made?

 

Image via Entertainment Weekly

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