Wednesday, October 22, 2014

LA and The World in a Stew Over Renee Zellwegger

People are freaking out EVERYWHERE that Renee Zellweger "doesn't look like herself." Everyone from plumbers to producers are sharing an outcry but the thing is, try watching a movie where a woman over the age of thirty-five-something is hired (that's the first miraculous thing) and doesn't look perfect (miraculous thing #2). Is she the lead? Huh. Wow. The Trifecta.

Then examine the cast of that movie. What do the men look like? Do they have "sexy" crow's feet? A big fat belly? How old are they? Is there an older man sleeping with a younger woman? There is? I'm so shocked.

I'm traveling and just watched "Chef" on the plane. I really like this movie. It has heart and soul. The portrayal of the young boy and the difficulty of dealing with his dad who's divorced from his mom was basically realistic. Basically. But I digress. Jon Favreau was very charming. Funny, smart, imperfect in some of his decisions. Oh, and one more thing: Jon Favreau was maybe 50-60 pounds overweight, was having sex with Scarlett Johannson, and then (*spoiler alert*) gets back together with his ex-wife, played by Sofia Vegara. Now I'm totally fine with it. No problem by me. Write the movie you want to write, cast it as you want to cast it. Entertaining. Really. I like those ladies. Everyone was good in the film. I'm happy as a clam.
John Favreau
Now...what if we reverse these roles, just as an experiment. The lead in a funny, well-done script, well-cast film, is an overweight woman? Not under 40. She's sleeping with Channing Tatum. Oh, and she's going to (*spoiler alert*) get back together with her ex, played by Adam Driver? Or okay, maybe he's slightly too young. We'll cast Ashton Kutcher. How about that movie? Oh, right. It doesn't really exist does it?


I guess I just needed to stick up for Renee. I don't know this woman. I can't say she wasn't beat out for a bunch of roles the past several years based on more than her looks. I know nothing about her career, really. What I do know is very few of us personally know the truth either. Nor do any one of us know what she's been through and reacted to or dealt with leading her to make the choices she's made. To not give her a fair shake, man, just seems cold and mean. Really cold and mean.

Off the top of my head, some actresses 45 and over working are: Julia Roberts, Sandra Bullock, Meryl Streep, Jessica Lange, Annette Bening, Angelica Huston, Helen Mirren, Susan Sarandon and Frances McDormand.

Most of these women were particularly beautiful as younger women. I mean drop-dead, other-worldly hot. Think about Meryl Streep in Kramer vs. Kramer, Jessica Lange in Frances, Annette Bening in Bugsy, Helen Mirren in anything, Susan Sarandon in Bull Durham.
Meryl Street
And they had it all in terms of being uber talented, stunningly beautiful, sexy as all get out, and a few even could age without a bunch of breast-ups and needles to the face and veins.

I am not sure, no I'm pretty sure we just can't, we DON'T look at the men the same way.

So you know, if you have better things to do then put down Renee Zellweger, God bless you. If not, and you're on the bandwagon with those putting down Renee Zellweger or dressing it up as feeling sorry for her, then think about the decisions made in not just Hollywood but in society. Think about the pressures on women regarding ageism, the demand women be flawless in beauty, and the insistence they make little to no mistakes with their career. If you're willing to apply these same rules to men, that would be one thing. If not, then maybe, and I say it with love, shut the fuck up.

p.s. I'll get back to writing about cool LA things but I had my panties in a bunch so you know, there you go.


  1. Here's a related, but slightly different perspective on the topic.