This piece offers a short answer to a question I've had. There have been an increasing number of complaints about the status of women in Hollywood: there aren't enough good roles for women, there aren't enough female-directed movies, there aren't enough female-written projects, women don't have enough lines in the top grossing films, etc. Etc.
My question is this: if the problem is that Hollywood is run by direly misogynist men, why don't some women start their own studios or otherwise bring their own projects to market? Compared to 50 years ago, or even 20 years ago, there are now a number of women in entertainment who are supposedly quite, quite wealthy. Couldn't they do it themselves and let the market work its magic?
Well, Ms. Witherspoon seems to be doing it. If she continues to succeed, she'll attract imitators and the issue will tend to evaporate. If she doesn't, we'll need either a new crisis to worry about or a new explanation. (I strongly suspect the latter would occur: I'd bet it would turn out to be the direly misogynist audience that needs fixing. Sigh.)