Heather Graham: Sexism hasn’t changed in Hollywood

“I always felt like I was a side character in a man’s story,” the Boogie Nights actress said.

Heather Graham reflects on how Hollywood has changed—or not changed—since she began her career in the 1980s.

The “Boogie Nights” actress acknowledged that sexism is now openly addressed in the industry, but “nothing has changed drastically” when it comes to greenlighting female-led stories.

“No one really thought about it or commented on it. At that point, people thought they had really progressed, and now we look back and say, “Wow, that was so sexist.” I’m glad we’re growing as a culture,” Graham said People magazine, adding that “few films from that period were so sexist”.

The ‘Bowfinger’ star continued: ‘I feel like nothing has changed drastically. More people are interested, but it is not suddenly equal. Still pretty sexist to be honest. In every stage of the business, be it financing, distribution, reviewers, these people are mostly men. It’s not that easy to make a female-driven story that appeals most to women at all levels of male-dominated business.”

Graham is preparing to produce the TV series “Hypnotist’s Love Story” and is directing and starring in the film “The Chosen Family” based on a screenplay he wrote.

“I always felt like I was a side character in a man’s story. I didn’t always go, what do I want? I went, how can I please someone else? Graham said. “My journey was to be more clear about what I wanted and go after it.”

She continued: “The most inspiring thing for me is seeing a lot of female writers and directors, and that’s what I’m starting to do. I love cool, edgy female directors who tell humorous stories from female perspectives. I would like to be in more of those… I really like hearing female voices because I think we learn a lot about the world from the movies and TV we watch. If we’re always told from a male point of view, it doesn’t help women.”

Emily Ratajkowski recently announced her retirement from acting after feeling like a “piece of meat” on screen and realizing her Hollywood team “everything hates women.”

“Maybe that’s why I’m not really interested in male POVs,” Ratajkowski told The Los Angeles Times. “It’s a fucked up world. Like, Hollywood is screwed. And it’s dark.”

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