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Sony leaked emails: Aaron Sorkin: Helen Mirren and Meryl Streep are the only actresses as good as male actors

Award-winning screenwriter says male roles come with a greater level of difficulty

Christopher Hooton
Tuesday 16 December 2014 10:48
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The Social Network writer Aaron Sorkin is the latest to see his private emails go public in the Sony hack, which posit that it is much easier to get an Oscar if you are a woman.

No sooner has Sorkin written in the New York Times that he felt the reportage of the fruits of the Sony hack was unjust, than his own correspondences surfaced.

He allegedly wrote in an email to NYT columnist Maureen Dowd:

"That was a great and very interesting column today. I’d only take issue with one thing and that's the idea that something like Bridesmaids is seen as a fluke and that's why we don't see more movies like Bridesmaids.

"There's an implication that studio heads have a stack of Bridesmaids-quality scripts on their desk that they're not making and it's just not true. The scripts aren't there."

He goes on to attack the recent recipients of the Best Actress Oscars, claiming "the degree of difficulty" in Cate Blanchett’s performance in Blue Jasmine was "nothing close to the degree of difficulty" in any of the roles for which men were nominated that year.

"That's why year in and year out, the guy who wins the Oscar for Best Actor has a much higher bar to clear than the woman who wins Best Actress. Cate gave a terrific performance in Blue Jasmine but nothing close to the degree of difficulty for any of the five Best Actor nominees. Daniel Day-Lewis had to give the performance he gave in Lincoln to win--Jennifer Lawrence won for Silver Linings Playbook, in which she did what a professional actress is supposed to be able to do. Colin Firth/Natalie Portman. Phil Hoffman had to transform himself into Truman Capote while Julia Roberts won for being brassy in Erin Brockovich. Sandra Bullock won for ‘The Blind Side’ and Al Pacino lost for both Godfather movies. Helen Mirren and Meryl Streep can play with the boys but there just aren't that many tour-de-force roles out there for women."

The emails were published by The Daily Beast, which defends its decision to do so despite Sorkin's claims that the hack is 'un-newsworthy', by pointing to those from Sony chairman Amy Pascal that imply films starring black people are all lumped into one category.

Other celebrities who fallen victim to the leak include George Clooney, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence and Channing Tatum.

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