It’s no secret that gender stereotypes continue to run rampant in Hollywood.
But what most people don’t realize is that the sexism is just as prominent behind the scenes as it is on-screen.
Many Hollywood casting calls for female actresses are full of blatant typecasts regarding age, body type, race and gender. Three friends—Julie Asriyan, Laura Bray and Jenna Ciralli—were particularly outraged by the amount of appalling character breakdowns they would come in contact with on a weekly basis. Together, they decided to create a video to draw awareness to the most cringe-worthy of casting call notices.
“Casting Call, The Project” is a short video featuring 18 female actresses reading real casting notices into the camera. The video perfectly captures the variety of reactions that arose from the actresses as they read the notices. Some notices elicited raised eyebrows and sighs from the actresses while other notices were met with obscenities and looks of absolute disgust.
Most of the casting call breakdowns convey expressed the typical ad/film stereotypes: “She’s actually pretty, even with no makeup” or “Her cleavage is her best feature.” Other casting call breakdowns emphasized the diluted ideas regarding feminism that often exist in the casting industry: “Prefer an actor who is not thin. This is a great role for a feminist.”
Beyond simply pointing out the blatantly sexist casting industry, “Casting Call, The Project” seeks to show creative women the importance of focusing on producing their own content. By taking on larger roles in the creative process, women can help design the female roles that they actually want to portray on TV or in films.