It is no secret that sexism and gender inequality run rampant in the entertainment industry. It is seamlessly integrated into the power structures and industries of the industry and, indeed, even in some aspects of society at large. Women in the spotlight are fed up with the existing status quo and have been increasingly vocal against practices of gender inequality in Hollywood over the past few years. Case in point: Tatiana Maslany. In an interview with People, Maslany critiqued the gender inequality and unrealistic beauty standards perpetuated by Hollywood.
Maslany told People that she herself had experienced numerous occasions of blatant sexism over the course of her acting career. Maslany recalled such incidents with incredulity:
Like being told, 'Let's not talk about that, sweetheart,' if I have an issue with being hit on by a 50-year-old when I was 17 and on set... It's never ending.
Maslany says she's not putting up with it anymore and it seems like she is one in a growing community of women who are putting their feet down.
Maslany continues to be a feminist advocate both off-screen in interviews and on-screen playing the pack of female clones on Orphan Black. If you're not very familiar with how awesome Tatiana Maslany is, just check out some her Maslany's most feminist quotes. You won't need anymore convincing after that.
"So often the male perspective is our default perspective in television, in film, and in all kinds of different media and I think that this show [Orphan Black] does is it just goes, 'nope.'" —
Orphan Black beautifully gives us a multitude of female perspectives to use as a lens through which we can see this crazy, clone-filled world.
"I don't think that any woman in this industry hasn't [experienced sexism] — I think we all have in various ways, and sometimes you can't even tell that it's happening because it's so ingrained in the way things are structured. Seventy or 80 percent of the people on set are male — directors, writers, producers, people in positions of power, but that's shifting too." — Interview with People
Dealing with sexism is bad enough. Dealing with sexism and only realizing it after the fact because we're so used to it is even worse.
"It's about autonomy, and the lack of it; about ownership of your body and image. It's about gender stereotypes, which we explore and bust open. This is all still very relevant to women — and to men, too." — Interview with etalk
Orphan Black tackles some tough issues and both men and women can benefit from its message.
"They're not physically superhuman and emotionless and without flaws. Having a strong female character doesn't mean she's beyond suffering and fragility. There's a fearlessness. That to me is strong writing for women. It defies gender." — Interview with AdWeek
Females can be strong television leads without being inaccessible to its audience. We need to see more of these in the entertainment industry.
"That always resonated for me as a woman to have this idea of our bodies not being our own... That they're owned by someone else. That the image of them is owned by someone else. I feel that's a very resonant theme for young women like myself, and especially women in this industry." — On NPR's Morning Edition
Maslany is very vocal about the injustices of gender inequality in the entertainment industry and the right to control her own image is part and parcel of her fight for equality.
"[On male clones potentially compromising OB's feminist agenda] That's so funny, as if feminism can be explored only if women are in positions of power. Do people think the female clones will instantly become the men's girlfriends and just cook for them?" — Interview with etalk
Just because there are men around doesn't mean it's compromising its feminist message.
"Being put into this little outfit that showed my midriff in a scene where I'm supposed to be grieving the death of a family member, and it's like, 'Make sure that her belly button is showing' — it's just pathetic. It's so pathetic." — Interview with People
There's a time and a place for crop tops and a funeral just isn't either.
Images: Giphy (7)