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Sexism Watch: Sigourney Weaver Can't Be An Action Star But Harrison Ford Can

by Melissa Silverstein
July 20, 2011 3:29 AM
3 Comments
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Sigourney Weaver is the mother of the female action hero. Her Ellen Ripley gave us a woman who was not afraid to be a woman and to kick some serious ass. As the second film (and best in my humble opinion) Aliens, celebrates its 25th anniversary this week, Weaver has been making the rounds of the press.

In an interview with Moviefone she talked about wanting to play Ripley one more time but that the studio wouldn't be interested in her because she is over 60.

That's so sad and sexist cause the studios have no problem having men over 60 be action heroes. Liam Neeson who will be 60 next year has been rediscovered as an action star. And remember Red with Bruce Willis (he's in his late 50s)? And aren't Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger making comebacks?

And don't get me started on Harrison Ford. Not only is he older than Weaver, all his movies are action movies.

But Weaver knows the reality and she was quite upfront with it. Here's what she said about why she won't get the chance to play Ripley again:

I doubt it just because the way the industry is. While I can't speak for them, I think for Fox, once you're sixty, you're not going to be starring in an action movie. I think it's too bad that that's the case. I would have liked to do one last story where we go back to the planet, where Ripley's history is resolved. But I do feel like her story is unfinished.

But she also thinks things will change especially because there are more women directors helming movies.

What's so exciting about women in action is that women bring a different focus to the action and it comes from a different source. I love all the performances you mention, I think they are all terrific and I wish we could see more of them. Every woman you see, in her kitchen or wherever else, has a secret action heroine in her; just wait till something happens to her children or husband, then you'll see it.

We have so many talented directors who grew up on movies like 'Aliens' and they are going to change that. And you're going to see a lot of young women directors coming up who say "I don't care if they are interested in that, this is what I'm going to do." I think everything is going to change, we're going to have a big revolution. I'm sure we're going to see, even in very real films, women being much more physical and just being the kick-ass women that they are. Then they don't have to be in outer space, it will be contemporary -- look out!

Do you have a secret action heroine in you?

Happy 25th Anniversary, Aliens! Let’s Reflect on its Genius (Movieline)

Sigourney Weaver on the Legacy of 'Aliens' & Her Sequel That Hollywood Won't Make (Moviefone)

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3 Comments

  • Catwoman | November 29, 2012 4:59 PMReply

    Funny how you mention RED but fail to mention Helen Mirren.

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  • Chris | July 21, 2011 12:29 PMReply

    From what I recall Weaver approached Fox with an idea for an Alien sequel 10 years ago and they passed.

    Aside from sexism the excuse/reason given as to why they don't want Weaver fronting the franchise again is the box office underperformance domestically of ALIEN 3 and ALIEN RESURRECTION respectively. Neither which was her fault but Hollywood execs love to find excuses when films fail to perform.

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