One of the many ridiculous things actresses put up with in order to pursue their chosen professions is a rapid narrowing of the kinds of roles they can play as they age. Meryl Streep and Jessica Chastain had something to say about ageism when Russell Crowe made some rather insensitive comments about it earlier this year, and now Maggie Gyllenhaal has come forward with a personal anecdote about the kind of absurd logic that goes into Hollywood casting decisions.
Gyllenhaal told The Wrap earlier this week that she was recently turned down for a role because she was seen as “too old” to play the love interest of a 55-year-old man. Gyllenhaal is 37. “It was astonishing to me. It made me feel bad, and then it made me feel angry, and then it made me laugh,” Gyllenhaal says.
By this same logic, Gyllenhaal is “too old” to play a romantic lead opposite James Spader, who is 55; never mind that the two already played lovers in the 2002 John-Hughes-by-way-of-Irving-Klaw romance Secretary. And are you really going to take away the one movie the “Fifty Shades Of Grey is bullshit” crowd has left?