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'Quite disturbing to me, to be honest': Jessica Chastain calls out sexism in film.

At the Cannes Film Festival, Chastain got candid about the need for more female directors.

'Quite disturbing to me, to be honest': Jessica Chastain calls out sexism in film.

Actor Jessica Chastain didn't pull any punches at the Cannes Film Festival closing press conference on May 28.

Chastain, who was a jury member at this year's event, was not happy about how women were portrayed in many of the stories she saw on screen, and she explained why.

Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images.


Her two cents, captured in a minute-long clip below, has been met with several hell yeahs from other women across the internet, including celebrated director Ava DuVernay, who shared it on Twitter:

Chastain told reporters that after watching 20 films in 10 days, she found the way women were represented in many of them to be "quite disturbing."

Changing the way women are represented on screen begins with giving women more consequential roles behind the camera, she argued.

“I do believe that if you have female storytelling, you also have more authentic female characters," Chastain began. "The one thing I really took away from this experience is how the world views women from the female characters that I saw represented. And it was quite disturbing to me, to be honest."

Photo by Matthias Nareyek/Getty Images.

When it comes to women's roles in Hollywood — in front of and behind the camera — the data backs up Chastain's point.

A study published in February 2017 by the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism found that of the 1,000 top-grossing films since 2007, just 1 in 24 were directed by women. That figure drops sharply for female directors of color.

What's more, the study found the span of a female director's career is shorter — men in their 20s or 80s can find directing success, while ageism appears to restrict younger and older women's opportunities. Certain types of films are far more inaccessible to female directors, too; women are less likely to get directing opportunities in action and thriller genres, for instance.

These gender imbalances are largely responsible for the discrepancy in opportunities for female actors. Speaking roles in Hollywood tend to go to men, and even when they don't, the characters women play are too often minimized to "the girlfriend, the mother, or the wife," Variety pointed out.

To Chastain, those numbers are unacceptable, but the solution is both obvious and possible.

Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images.

"I do hope that when we include more female storytellers, we will have more of the women that I recognize in my day-to-day life," Chastain concluded at Cannes, "ones that are proactive, have their own agencies, just don’t react to the men around them. They have their own point of view."

Courtesy of CeraVe
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"I love being a nurse because I have the honor of connecting with my patients during some of their best and some of their worst days and making a difference in their lives is among the most rewarding things that I can do in my own life" - Tenesia Richards, RN

From ushering new life into the world to holding the hand of a patient as they take their last breath, nurses are everyday heroes that deserve our respect and appreciation.

To give back to this community that is always giving so selflessly to others, CeraVe® put out a call to nurses to share their stories for a chance to be featured in Heroes Behind the Masks, a digital content series shining a light on nurses who go above and beyond to provide safe and quality care to patients and their communities.

First up: Tenesia Richards, a labor and delivery nurse working in New York City who, in addition to her regular job, started a community outreach program in a homeless shelter that houses expectant mothers for up to one year postpartum.

Tenesia | Heroes Behind the Masks presented by CeraVe www.youtube.com

Upon learning at a conference that black mothers in the U.S. die at three to four times the rate of white mothers, one of the widest of all racial disparities in women's health, Richards decided to take further action to help her community. She, along with a handful of fellow nurses, volunteered to provide antepartum, childbirth and postpartum education to the women living at the shelter. Additionally, they looked for other ways to boost the spirits of the residents, like throwing baby showers and bringing in guest speakers. When COVID-19 hit and in-person gatherings were no longer possible, Richards and her team found creative workarounds and created holiday care packages for the mothers instead.

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Image by 5540867 from Pixabay

Figuring out what to do for a mom on Mother's Day can be a tricky thing. There's the standard flowers or candy, of course, and taking her out to a nice brunch is a fairly universal winner. But what do moms really want?

Speaking from experience—my kids range from age 12 to 20—a lot depends on the stage of motherhood. What I wanted when my kids were little is different than what I want now, and I'm sure when my kids are grown and gone I'll want something different again.

We asked our readers to share what they want for Mother's Day, and while the answers were varied, there were some common themes that emerged.

Moms of young kids want a break.

When your kids are little, motherhood is relentless. Precious and adorable, yes. Wonderful and rewarding, absolutely. But it's a LOT. And it's a lot all the fricking time.

Most moms I know would love the gift of alone time, either away at a hotel or Airbnb or in their own home with no one else around. Time alone is a priceless commodity at this stage, especially if it comes with someone else taking care of cleaning, making sure the kids are fed and safe and occupied, doing the laundry, etc.

This is especially true after more than a year of pandemic living, where we moms have spent more time than usual at home with our offspring. While in some ways that's been great, again, it's a lot.

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Courtesy of CeraVe
True

"I love being a nurse because I have the honor of connecting with my patients during some of their best and some of their worst days and making a difference in their lives is among the most rewarding things that I can do in my own life" - Tenesia Richards, RN

From ushering new life into the world to holding the hand of a patient as they take their last breath, nurses are everyday heroes that deserve our respect and appreciation.

To give back to this community that is always giving so selflessly to others, CeraVe® put out a call to nurses to share their stories for a chance to be featured in Heroes Behind the Masks, a digital content series shining a light on nurses who go above and beyond to provide safe and quality care to patients and their communities.

First up: Tenesia Richards, a labor and delivery nurse working in New York City who, in addition to her regular job, started a community outreach program in a homeless shelter that houses expectant mothers for up to one year postpartum.

Tenesia | Heroes Behind the Masks presented by CeraVe www.youtube.com

Upon learning at a conference that black mothers in the U.S. die at three to four times the rate of white mothers, one of the widest of all racial disparities in women's health, Richards decided to take further action to help her community. She, along with a handful of fellow nurses, volunteered to provide antepartum, childbirth and postpartum education to the women living at the shelter. Additionally, they looked for other ways to boost the spirits of the residents, like throwing baby showers and bringing in guest speakers. When COVID-19 hit and in-person gatherings were no longer possible, Richards and her team found creative workarounds and created holiday care packages for the mothers instead.

Keep Reading Show less