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Maggie Gyllenhaal Decries Hollywood Ageism for Actresses

May 21, 2015

LOS ANGELES - It was bound to happen, Maggie Gyllenhall told The Wrap, but she didn't think it would be this soon. But the 37-year-old actress said she was told she was too old to play a young lover of an older man.

 

"I’m 37 and I was told recently I was too old to play the lover of a man who was 55. It was astonishing to me. It made me feel bad, and then it made me feel angry, and then it made me laugh," she told the entertainment website.

 

Despite the sexism, Gyllenhaal said she remains optimistic about ageism: "A lot of actresses are doing incredible work right now, playing real women, complicated women. I don’t feel despairing at all. And I’m more looking with hope for something fascinating."

 

But things for actresses are not getting in better in Hollywood. According to San Diego State University’s Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film, there are fewer jobs available for actresses in leading roles since female characters made up just 12 percent of protagonists in the top 100 domestic-grossing films of 2014.

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