Dame Helen Mirren stands up for women

  

Dame Helen Mirren stands up for women

Dame Helen Mirren is one of the best British actors of our time. She is one of the very few actors who have achieved the Triple Crown of Acting - a term used in the American entertainment industry to describe actors who have won a competitive Academy Award (2007), Emmy Award (1996) and Tony Award (2015) in the acting categories.

Despite her talent and success, she has had to go through the sexism that characteristic of show business. However, Helen Mirren has been brave and has been fighting against sexism for decades. The most notable case is when the actress appeared on her first-ever talk show, Parkinson, hosted by Michael Parkinson. The sexist questioning she had to endure may be outrageous, but it reflects what female celebrities tend to endure when dealing with the media.
Parkinson introduces Helen in a chilled-out tone: “The critics spend as much time discussing her physical attributes as assessing her acting ability.” Then he quotes reviewers who have described the member of the Royal Shakespeare Company as a “sex queen” who possesses a “sluttish eroticism.”
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Then he goes on to ask: “do you find that what could be best described as your equipment in fact hinders you perhaps in that pursuit?”
When she inquires about her equipment, he tries to avoid to answer but then admits he was referring to her figure or “bosom.”
Mirren asks him if serious actresses can't have big bosoms, and then he responds, “I think that might sort of detract them from the performance if you know what I mean.”
But then Dame Helen burned him: “I can't think that can necessarily be true. I mean what a crummy performance if people are obsessed with the size of your bosom or anything else. I would hope that the performance and the play and the living relationship between all the people on the state and all the people in the audience overcome such boring questions.”
But she has stood up for women over decades:
“Women have got to stop being polite. If I ever had children, which I don't, the first thing I'd teach a girl of mine is the words ‘f- off.'” “At 70 years old, if I could give my younger self one piece of advice, it would to use the worlds ‘f- off' much more frequently.”
“You can't control how other people see you or think of you. And you have to be comfortable with that.”
“I think every woman in our culture is a feminist. They may refuse to articulate it, but if you were to take any woman back 40 years and say, ‘Is this a world you want to live in?' They would say, ‘No'”
“Fear can be one of the most destructive emotions. It is, of course, also very important, in that fear sometimes stops you from doing stupid things. But it can also stop you from doing creative or exciting or experimental things. It can cloud your judgement of others, and lead to all kinds of evil. The control and understanding of our personal fears is one of the most important undertakings in our lives.”
“The trick in life is learning how to deal with it.”
“40 is good, 50 is great, 60 is fab and 70 is f- awesome.”
“It seems to me that the years between eighteen and twenty-eight are the hardest, psychologically. It's then you realize this is make or break, you no longer have the excuse of youth, and it is time to become an adult - but you are not ready.”
“The role of women has always been undervalued in the spy world, always undermined in terms of recognition. Unfairly so. It's a world that needs women.”
“When you're young and beautiful, you are paranoid and miserable.”
“You write your life story by the choices you make.”

 

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