The Backlash! - What Everyone Should Know about Feminist Issues - Movies: Silver Screen Sexism
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Movies: Silver Screen Sexism
By Rod Van Mechelen
Given that several women in Hollywood now get leading roles, this is dated, but it serves to highlight the irrelevance of feminism, which had nothing to do with the rise of women in the movies. ... Unless it's on the man-hating channels, like Lifetime TV.
Are female movies stars getting the shaft?
1992 Bellevue, Wash. - Why do male movie stars make more money than female movie stars? Is it because of industry sexism? Because male chauvinist producers value men more than women? Because there's no way a woman can get an even break in Hollywood? Because, despite decades of progress, women are still getting the shaft? Or is it because men are worth more at the box office than women are.

Most men would rather see a "bodaceous babe" on the silver screen any day of the week. But most women would rather see Mel Gibson's twinkling eyes or Kevin Costner's buns. So Mel and Kevin make big bucks, while most people don't even know who Greta Scacci is because women have hated her ever since her (hubba-hubba!) shower scene in The Coca-Cola Kid, and liked her even less in Presumed Innocent.

Two strikes working against them
Whether it's a silver-screen soap opera, or a science fiction adventure, actresses have two strikes against them. First, female movie goers are usually less interested in Sean Young than Sean Connery.

Second, while most men would rather see Sean Young or Jennifer Grey, if Sean Connery and Patrick Swayze are the men whom women find sexy, then men will pay dollars to see Connery and Swayze over Young and Grey in the hopes that, by learning to emulate such men, they will become more attractive to women.

If there is any silver screen sexism, it's nothing more than the sexism of supply and demand.


Rod Van Mechelen

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