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June 1998, Week 5


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Erika Caswell <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 30 Jun 1998 12:33:58 -0500
text/plain (67 lines)
Got this off another list.  Has anyone seen this?  It was discovered at E!
>Top 100 Too Male, Says Streep
>by Bridget Byrne
>June 22, 1998, 2:50 p.m. PT
>Tinseltown has long been pegged as a testosterone-crazed burg. The continued
>complaint that Hollywood shortchanges women was rekindled this weekend by Meryl
>Streep, who sounded off about the lack of strong female representation in the
>American Film Institute's list of 100 best films.
>Appearing at the Women in Film Crystal Awards luncheon Friday, Streep groused
>that she had not been asked to vote for the much ballyhooed AFI list. She asked
>those in attendance--including may top female execs and producers--if they
>received a ballot. Only a few indicated they had.
>The Oscar winner then suggested that most of the AFI voters were men and that
>only a handful of the top films showcased strong female roles--and that one of
>those, Snow White, was a cartoon.
>According to a source at the luncheon, the response to Streep's remarks was
>mixed. "There was a lot of applause from certain quarters and a cry of, 'Go get
>'em Meryl,' from the back of the room, but there was also a sense of
>And Jack Nicholson was groaning."
>Streep, who has been outspoken before on such Industry topics as female-star
>salaries, admitted that maybe she was just "whining"--something Nicholson (at
>the luncheon to honor his Heartburn costar) hates but "somebody has to."
>Streep is not, of course, the only one whining about the AFI list, which has
>generated the publicity the institute hoped for, but not without controversy.
>When it comes to such lists, everyone has an opinion, and the newspapers and
>airwaves have been cluttered with response and comment from everyone from local
>deejays to Sam Donaldson (making a vigorous case on ABC's This Week that his
>favorite movie Quo Vadis should have been included).
>The Los Angeles Times conducted its own poll via fax and email. Topping the
>newspaper's list of dissed films: Braveheart, followed by Titanic. (AFI only
>included movies released through 1996.) The readers also were upset by the
>omission of Field of Dreams and Mel Brooks' gassy western spoof Blazing
>Many critics have also noted the absence of Greta Garbo films and Fred and
>Ginger classics--movies perhaps hurt by an antifemale bias. One attendee at the
>Crystal Awards lunch noted: "It was stunning to hear Streep point out that the
>few strong female figures represented on the list were Snow White, Julie
>in The Sound of Music and Bette Davis in All About Eve. What does that tell us
>about Industry attitudes when the women are a cartoon, a virgin and a bitch."
>While AFI has refused to divulge exactly how many women were among the voters,
>CEO Jean Picker Firstenberg says, "They were well represented." Scott
Oster, AFI
>director of communications, insisted a ballot had been sent to Streep via
>Creative Artists Agency and: "We regret it if it did not reach her."
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