The Hollywood Reporter recently put together a roundtable with women who star in comedy shows, specifically Jane Levy, Jameela Jamil, Elle Fanning, Robin Thede, Amy Sedaris, and Tiffany Haddish, with the chat touching on various subjects like how they feel about where their careers are, how they think they’re perceived by Hollywood, and whether or not they feel like things are starting to change regarding the kinds of roles that women are offered in comedies. To that last point, the answer seems to mostly be a disappointing “not so much,” with Jamil saying that she received a script for an unnamed project written by a “very, very famous actor” in which she would’ve played a police officer who has to go undercover as a “hypersexualized bimbo” with a line that Jamil initially said was “too filthy” to actually say out loud. (It was “I want you to cover me in your man milk,” and if anyone wants to anonymously tells us which famous person wrote those words, we’d like to know.)
Jamil said that seeing roles like that is “demoralizing,” and Haddish then shared a story of her own: Apparently she was offered a part in Chris Rock’s Top Five (in which he plays sort of an alternate universe version of himself) that would’ve involved her playing one of two women involved in a threesome with Rock. In the scene, Cedric The Entertainer then shows up and—as she puts it—”he’s supposed to ‘blah’ all over the faces.” She turned down the part, saying, “I’m a stand-up comedian and I don’t let people do that in my face in real life, so why would I do it in this movie?” She adds that she wants people to respect her, and she has since made that clear to her representation as well, saying “somebody might get fired” if they try to make her go against her morals. To that end, she has weekly conversations with her “people” to talk about where she’s at “mentally” and what sort of things she wants to do so she can avoid situations like the Chris Rock movie.