We absolutely love Kate Beckinsale’s hilarious Manspreading Action Plan

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Kayleigh Dray
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Ah, manspreading.

For so many years, we thought that it was a pandemic uniquely specific to our daily commute: after all, almost anyone who has ventured aboard a bus, train, or tube carriage will have seen plenty of men sitting with their legs akimbo, taking up all the room ever.

But it seems as if men can manspread pretty much wherever they want to, be it in a restaurant, at the cinema, in a business meeting, or even whilst interviewing someone like Kate Beckinsale at a superhero convention.

Oh yes.

Firstly, we’d like to point out that, while manspreading is obviously more noticeable when it encroaches on our personal space (there’s nothing that causes our blood to boil more than the hard shove of a stranger’s knee against ours), it it doesn’t always have to involve physical contact.

For many, the mere sight of a man sitting opposite with his legs spread wide can be enough to cause a double take – especially when accompanied by a slow and languorous crossing of the legs, a la Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct.

It’s not necessarily annoying – but it can be embarrassing, especially if your eyes unconsciously flicker down when he (however unwittingly) makes the move.

Thankfully, Beckinsale has the answer.

Sharing a photograph of herself at Sacramento’s Wizard World Comic Con, the Underworld actor joked: “If a man pulls the Basic Instinct leg-cross on you onstage, it's important to maintain a firm grip on your microphone and look him dead in his eyeballs, unperturbed.”

With an appropriate hashtag, of course.

Of course, Beckinsale is famed for her social media witticisms: the actor – who is just 43 – was recently mistaken for Sarah Silverman’s mum.

As in, yes, the very same Sarah Silverman who’s now dating Beckinsale’s ex (and Lily’s father) Michael Sheen.

Instead of getting up in arms, though, Beckinsale decided to just roll with it.

“[She’s my] granddaughter,” quipped the 43-year-old, ignoring the fact that Silverman is three years her senior.

“We are very proud of her.”

Never change, Kate.

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Kayleigh Dray

Kayleigh Dray is Stylist’s digital editor-at-large. Her specialist topics include comic books, films, TV and feminism. On a weekend, you can usually find her drinking copious amounts of tea and playing boardgames with her friends.