“Liberal” Hollywood has a long way to go on matters of gender equality. But, according to one Fox News contributor, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, and female actresses should stop complaining about the bias and just be “grateful” they’re being cast beside big (male) names.
Former actress and Fox News contributor Stacey Dash made the remarks on Friday’s “Outnumbered,” during a discussion on gender inequality in Hollywood.
“I know hundreds of thousands of actresses who would love to play the leading lady to a Leonardo DiCaprio, a Matt Damon, you know, a George Clooney,” Dash said, adding that, “So, you’ve gotta be grateful for what you got and if you want more, then get it. Work for it.”
Dash’s argument is the same argument used against raising the minimum wage, and it’s the same toxic argument that has its roots in the bootstraps myth. You should be thankful for having a job, even though it’s your responsibility to have a job if you want to survive.
She also noted that, “if you are directing a film, man or woman, there is pressure and if you don’t do a good job, the results are the same — you’re not gonna get to do it again, or maybe you will” and, “it doesn’t matter on your gender. That’s not what’s gonna, you know, affect the outcome.”
Co-host Harris Faulkner jumped in, agreeing with Dash and pointing out that there were plenty of female executives, like Oprah:
How many female exec— I mean you’ve got Oprah Winfrey. you know I mentioned Ava with ‘Selma’ who directed that, you’ve got Oprah Winfrey. You’ve got a lot of people who are opening doors for other women in the business, too. You know, Tyler Perry is another. I mean you do have lots of opportunity
Not everyone agreed with Dash, however; co-host Melissa Francis noted that the number of female directors has been steadily declining over the last 17 years, and that there is a huge disparity between the gender ratio of the lead actor/actress and the director.
“The reason why this matters is because if there is a woman executive producer, writer, or director, then 39 percent of the time the lead in the movie is also a female,” Francis said. “If it’s a male writer, director, producer, only four percent of the time is the opportunity there for the actress.”
Co-host Sandra Smith tried to split the difference, saying that it made “so much sense” to her, because “sometimes you need a female perspective from a directional (sic) standpoint” and “sometimes you need a male direction.”
Dash noted that Kathryn Bigelow, one of the women in Hollywood who’s calling for change, won an Oscar for her move, “The Hurt Locker,” saying, “Like it’s relative. It’s all relative. Like I said you have to fight for what you want and be good at it. Be extraordinary at it.”
Watch Stacey Dash and the rest of the cast discuss the gender gap below:
Featured image via screen capture