Why does Hollywood hate women?

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Illustration by Sophia Meytin

Actress Brie Larson is called ¨annoying,¨ a ¨show-off,¨ and an ¨upstart,¨ while actor Ansel Elgort is called ¨brave,¨ ¨strong,¨ and ¨out-going.¨

As a passionate movie-goer and avid Letterboxd user, I was elated to watch “West Side Story” with my sister. We purchased tickets as soon as they became available and anticipated the exciting outing for the several hours preceding it. It’s a bonding experience: sitting in a hushed movie theater, immersed in a different world together, and crying over the inevitable death of the love interest. And the popcorn — oh, the popcorn. The salty, buttery goodness that melts in your mouth, the perfect contrast to the Junior Mints you’re sharing. What a glorious escape from the mountain of homework I had waiting for me at home. Nothing could ruin it. Until it did.

There he sat in his “mysterious bad boy” angst, fresh out of jail and wondering how the world had failed him. I gaped in shock at the big screen. Ansel Elgort was back and untouched by the horrifying accusations of June 2020.

Disappointed and, honestly, upset, I searched Elgort up to see if I was alone in my anger. I wasn’t. Headlines such as, “How ‘West Side Story’ Tried to Contain its Ansel Elgort Problem,” and “Revisiting the Sexual-Misconduct Allegations Against Ansel Elgort” screamed up at me. I navigated to YouTube, as I had read he’d been on a press tour, and was equally as nauseated as I was enraged. Talk show appearances and red carpet interviews dated from the past two weeks filled my screen. Relief swept over me as I fell into the rabbit-hole of YouTube comments, nodding in agreement to random internet users stating, “This is extremely disappointing,” and asking, “what about the accusations against Ansel?” I thought to myself: okay, it’s not just me.

But still, how could such relevant and esteemed talk show hosts as James Corden and Drew Barrymore agree to sit-down with a sexual predator?

That’s when I realized that this issue is much broader than Corden and Barrymore alone. I revisited the earlier “How ‘West Side Story’ Tried to Contain its Ansel Elgort Problem” article and read on. It was all basic stuff about press tours, the strategy that any right-minded, private celebrity follows. So really, it’s not “How ‘West Side Story’ Tried to Contain its Ansel Elgort Problem,” but “How Hollywood Tries to Contain its Sex Offender Problem.” Really, Hollywood is just protecting men. Countless men such as Woody Allen and Roman Polanski are going to go down in history — not because of their gross behavior — but because of the success Hollywood has allowed them.

Woody Allen married his adoptive daughter, who is 35 years younger than him, in 1997. His most recent project came out this year, 24 years later. He is still married to the same woman, but will forever be known as the iconic “Midnight in Paris” director.

Filmmaker and director Roman Polanski sexually assaulted a 13 year old girl at the age of 43. Over 40 years later, blockbuster and Academy Award-winning ¨Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood¨ came out, directed by him, alongside Quentin Tarantino, director of the famous “Pulp Fiction.”

Men go around doing whatever they want to whoever they want. There are no repercussions for their actions.Yet, when it comes to women “making mistakes,” their careers are often ended for much less extreme actions. This is certainly what I’d call a double-standard.

In June 2020, a woman by the name of Gabby took to Twitter asserting that Elgort pursued her as a minor in 2014 and requested inappropriate things from her via DMs, asking her if she’d have a threesome with him and another underage friend, if she’d send nudes and the like. He also allegedly raped her.

Several other women also came forward stating that he asked them for nudes via DMs. One said he gave her his personal Snapchat (she was 16 at the time, while he was over 18). Another 16-year-old said he took her on two dates in Georgia, where the age of consent is 16. Another received a sexually explicit image from him when she was 14.

Elgort took to Instagram after the accusations went viral and rejected only Gabby’s accusation. There was no mention of any of the other accusations. However, he did claim that the two had a completely legal and consensual relationship. In a now-deleted Instagram post, he recalled, “Her description of events is simply not what happened.”

Now, allow me to introduce highly successful but widely hated actress Brie Larson, who you might know as Captain Marvel. Her breakthrough role came in the independent drama “Short Term 12,” which earned her a nomination for the Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead. Just two years later, she starred in the thriller “Room,” which earned her her first Academy Award.

Laron’s success has not steered haters away from her spotlight. One quick YouTube search will bring up “brie Larson annoying everyone in the marvel cast for 8.5 minutes” and “Why the internet HATES Brie Larson,” among other interviews and “Brie Larson being annoying” compilations.

Why does the internet hate Brie Larson?

Larson seems to have a somewhat arrogant personality. Sure, she’s made some considerably tasteless comments at inappropriate times. For instance, when she said ¨I did my stunts because I thought that that´s what everyone did¨ in response to Chris Hemsworth praising his own in an Entertainment Tonight interview — but does that really warrant the cloud of hate she’s gotten? Trolls have gone so far as to tell her to kill herself over an unsuccessful sarcastic comment in a most-likely scripted interview.

Hollywood is protecting Elgort, pushing him on a press tour, but not allowing personal interviews to avoid the impending allegation questions (thus, the internet can’t hate what isn’t there). In fact, he has a new movie, ”Dungeons and Dragons,” coming out in 2023. This fantasy-adventure film is just another genre to add to his resume of successful films, alongside other dramas, romances, and action flicks.

Larson’s roles generally take place in dramatic films. That is until she was cast as Captain Marvel. Now, all her movies are only action-based and that seems to be the same for the next few years, as well, with the release of ¨Thor: Love and Thunder¨ and ¨The Marvels.¨ She has been pushed into a single genre.

When I go to the movie theater to bond with my sister, I expect to see strong, empowering, morally-correct people on-screen, not sexual predators.

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