Chloë Sevigny is in Cannes this week, promoting her directorial debut, the short film called “Kitty.” While there, she spoke on Variety’s panel, and in doing so further revealed the horrible reality faced by most women in Hollywood.
Speaking about past auditions, Sevigny said, “I’ve had the ‘what are you doing after this?’ conversation. I’ve also had the ‘do you want to go shopping and try on some clothes and, like, I can buy you something in the dressing room [conversation].'” Sevigny continued, saying that a director had warned her once that she needed to show off her body more, before she gets too old. She apparently countered that she’d already spent much of her time onscreen nude.
Shockingly, when asked if she considered this sexual harassment, Sevigny did not. She simply said, “I would call it Hollywood.” It’s a devastating statement but one that really hammers home the reality of women in Hollywood, on either side of the camera. As a director, Sevigny said, “When women on set become a little emotional, or impassioned even, they’re labeled as hysterical or crazy and have a hard time getting hired again. The double standard of the man being the wild, crazy, mad director is so embraced.”
These are surprising comments only because of the way she says them, with such apathy, resigned to live in this world. And that’s not to say that she’s to blame; it’s just that the problem is so fundamental that she doesn’t see the need to rail against it. Aside from that, the comments aren’t surprising at all, as it seems that any time a powerful woman in the arts is given a chance to speak out about her experiences, there’s some awfulness committed by men not too long ago.