Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

‘The only kind of film where women make more money than men is porno’ Salma Hayek calls out inequality in film

rexfeatures_4775568ai.jpg

Salma Hayek has come out as Hollywood’s latest feminist whistle-blower, following comments she made at the Cannes Film Festival on Saturday.

Speaking at a panel organised by Variety magazine and the UN Women’s HeForShe campaign, the actor, who stars in Matteo Garonne’s Italian horror, The Tale of Tales, debuting at the festival, critiqued all elements of the film industry. She referenced citing sexist directors, the wage gap, and casting methods, as problems to be resolved.

Hayek, who has also worked as a director and producer - most notably for multi-award winning 2002 Frida Khalo biopic, Frida - made a rallying cry for gender equality in film, arguing that “cinema undermines women’s intelligence”.

“For a long time they thought the only thing we were interested in seeing were romantic comedies,” Hayek said. “They don’t see us as a powerful economic force.”

Salma Hayek Ugly Betty

The actor starred in Ugly Betty with America Ferrera

Hayek outed the Hollywood casting process as “very sexist”, telling of her experience on one occasion when a director approached her for a role and subsequently sought confirmation of her by the male lead. “They get approval of leading ladies. The dude didn’t approve me and I got kicked out.”

The Ugly Betty star’s primary bug-bear was the continuing pay gap problem in the film industry, between men and women playing equivalent roles. Hayek challenged Hollywood to open its eyes and see female actors as the monetary force they could be. “They have to understand how powerful we are economically. We have the power to show them we can save this film industry,” she said, but even when a woman does land a leading role, “the dude takes the credit.” “It’s simple, plain ignorance.”

“They think the only value we bring to a movie is as an object. The only kind of film where women make more money than men is porno. It’s not funny.” Well, we’re not laughing, either.

The Mexican-born American was criticised last year for disassociating herself from the word “feminist” but in an interview in The Guardian this year, said: “I am a feminist because I love women and I am ready to fight for women”.

 

Related

salma.jpg

Salma Hayek; 'I would die if I did nothing but manicures and lunches'

rexfeatures_502975as.jpg

Celebrity best friends: stars reveal the female friendships that have

Untitled-23.jpg

Behind-the-scenes look at the Golden Globes

Comments

More

Danielle Brooks has something important to say about her stretch marks

The Orange is the New Black star has dubbed them the "road map of my strength"

by Jasmine Andersson
21 Apr 2017

Davina McCall on how she beat her heroin addiction: ‘I lost everyone’

The TV presenter has spoken candidly about her struggles with drug abuse

by Kayleigh Dray
21 Apr 2017

Tess Holliday slams Uber over "fat-shaming" driver

The body-positive model is boycotting the cab service for a driver's inappropriate questions about her health.

by Hayley Spencer
20 Apr 2017

Why Chelsea Clinton wants to talk about periods and breastfeeding

The former First Daughter has made it her mission to eradicate taboos

by Elle Griffiths
20 Apr 2017

Anne Hathaway didn’t trust One Day director because she was a woman

“I’m so scared that I treated her with internalized misogyny.”

by Moya Crockett
20 Apr 2017

Serena Williams was pregnant when she won the Australian Open

And she didn’t drop a single set

by Kayleigh Dray
20 Apr 2017

Katy Perry on how going into therapy changed her life for the better

“When I am in the room I am just Katheryn Hudson, which is amazing.”

by Moya Crockett
19 Apr 2017

Jessica Chastain reveals how she gets paid as much as male co-stars

The A-lister has learned to play hard ball when it comes to Hollywood sexism

by Elle Griffiths
19 Apr 2017

Star Wars writer shares story of being sexually harassed on train

“I’m telling this story to remind you that this is what women face every. Goddamn. Day.”

by Moya Crockett
19 Apr 2017

Amanda Seyfried chats to Stylist about mental health and farm life

“It feels good to speak my mind”

by Helen Bownass
18 Apr 2017